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Archive for Tuesday, December 28, 1999

OFFICIALS OFFER TIPS ON HOLIDAY DRIVING

December 28, 1999

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State and local law enforcement officers have tips for getting there safely during the holidays.

Watch out for winter road conditions and tipsy holiday revelers, if you're getting behind the wheel for the New Year's holiday.

AAA of Kansas estimates there will be 44.6 million Americans traveling more than 100 miles this week for the holidays, 5.6 million in the Midwest alone.

And officials have some advice for arriving safely at a friend's party across town or an out-of-state family reunion.

"Any of those folks planning on trips during the holiday season ... should plan to pay very close attention to the weather conditions," said Sgt. Mark Bruce of Kansas Highway Patrol.

That includes checking forecasts and road conditions and leaving early, if needed, to allow extra time for travel in snow or other complicating conditions.

"We typically suggest people carry a survival kit," Bruce said, in case they are stranded.

The well stocked kit should include jumper cables, a blanket or two, a flashlight, rope or tow chain and a spare tire.

Be on the look out for other drivers, advises Sgt. George Wheeler of Lawrence Police Department, especially on New Year's Eve.

"We're going to have lots of people available, and we're going to be looking for people that not only are stranded but those that are causing problems," he said.

This New Year's Eve is expected to be worse than most because of millennium celebrations.

"We're expecting to see the same kind of problems we have every New Year's, only multiplied," Wheeler said.

Those cheering in the New Year with spirits should plan a safe ride home. That means appointing a designated driver for the evening.

"That's not the person that had the least to drink, that's the person that had nothing to drink," Bruce said.

Traveling from party to party increases the likelihood of an accident.

"Pick a spot and stay and enjoy the celebration," Wheeler said.

For those without a designated driver on New Year's Eve, Tipsy Taxi will be offering free rides home again this year. Last year, the service took more than 200 revelers home.

The service is available between 8 p.m. Dec. 31 and 6 a.m. Jan. 1. Free rides are given only to those that ask for them, and only to their home, not another party or business. There may be a wait for rides due to demand, sometimes up to two hours. To get a ride, call Lawrence Taxi Service at 842-TAXI (842-8294).

-- Felicia Haynes' phone message number is 832-7173. Her e-mail address is fhaynes@ljworld.com.



TIPSY TAXI RIDES

Tipsy Taxi again this year is offering free rides home for New Year's Eve revelers.

The service, operated by Larwence Taxi Service (842-8294) is sponsored by DCCCA Inc., Lawrence Memorial Hospital, Jensen Retail Liquor, Craig Retail Liquor, Cork & Barrel, Hy-Vee, The Yacht Club, The Sandbar, The Granada, The Red Lyon Tavern, Rays' Liquor Warehouse, Johnny's Tavern, Myers Retail Liquor, Don's Steakhouse, Rick's Bar and Grill, Kansas Licensed Beverage Assn., Henry T's Bar and Grill, Patterson Liquor Store, the Lawrence Journal-World and Sunflower Cablevision.

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