Amidst all the barbecues and cookouts over the extended July 4th holiday, the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office had a busy weekend of its own.
“It was a steady, yet successful holiday weekend for the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office as no major incidents were recorded, but several arrests were made,” said ECSO spokesman Detective David Ehsanipoor.
Effingham County deputies set up road checks and increased their traffic patrols throughout the county, in hopes of reducing the chances of any serious injuries or deaths in traffic crashes.
The ECSO arrested 10 people for driving under the influence during the designated holiday period. Deputies also made more than 20 additional arrests, including three on drug charges, and issued 120 traffic citations.
“I am proud of our guys for putting forth their efforts in keeping this county safe,” Sheriff Jimmy McDuffie said.
The Georgia Department of Public Safety considered the holiday period to be from 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 3 to midnight Sunday, July 7. At 102 hours, it was longer than most designated holiday periods for law enforcement.
However, the ECSO was out in force even longer. The increased patrols began Tuesday night, were in “full force” by Wednesday and continued into Monday morning, Ehsanipoor said.
“This was a pretty long holiday period,” Ehsanipoor said. “Our goal was successful — not in the number of tickets of arrests, but in nobody getting seriously injured or killed.”
However, the same could not be said for other areas of Georgia. Eleven people died in traffic crashes across the state during the July 4th holiday travel period, according to the Georgia State Patrol.
Statewide, GSP troopers investigated 785 traffic crashes that resulted in 374 injuries and four deaths. In addition, state troopers arrested more than 300 people for DUI and made more than 16,600 traffic stops.
Along with the fatalities investigated by the GSP, traffic deaths were reported during the holiday period by the Henry County Police, Atlanta Police, Fulton County Police, Carrollton Police, Jones County Sheriff’s Office, Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, and Columbia County Sheriff’s Office.
The state patrol reported that one man died in a single-car crash in Jefferson County and another died in a one-car wreck in Catoosa County. Neither driver was wearing a seat belt, according to investigators.
The GSP also investigated a motorcycle crash in Haralson County that resulted in two deaths.