BEVERLY HILLS—On Tuesday, July 2, the Beverly Hills Police Department announced in a media release that they are alerting drivers to plan ahead if they are planning to celebrate the Fourth of July holiday by drinking.

The BHPD reported that in 2022, 487 people were killed in crashes throughout the country during the Fourth of July holiday period. Of those fatal crashes, 40 percent involved alcohol. In California, 68 people were killed in crashes during the 2023 Independence Day holiday period. In addition, California Highway Patrol officers made nearly 1,224 arrests for driving under the influence – an average of one DUI arrest every five minutes.

“Choosing a sober driver is not just about following the law; it’s about saving lives,” said BH Police Chief Mark G. Stainbrook. “If you plan on celebrating the Fourth of July with a drink, we want you to make a plan to go safely with a sober ride home. Think of your loved ones, friends, and family before getting behind the wheel.”

Driving under the influence includes impairment from prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and marijuana. The BHPD is alerting the public who may be hosting friends and family for barbecues and watching fireworks shows, offer nonalcoholic drinks for designated sober drivers and monitor who is drinking. If they see people leaving who have been drinking, offer to have them stay the night or make arrangements for them to take a sober ride home. Anyone who sees an impaired driver or witnesses someone driving recklessly should contact 9-1-1.