SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Prosecutors in seven California counties say they are seeing a rapid rise in deadly DUI crashes just as people begin socializing for the holidays and planning New Year's Eve outings.
They largely blamed the coronavirus pandemic, with one prosecutor saying people are buying and drinking more alcohol.
Traffic fatalities jumped 15% statewide, comparing the most recent statistics for October to a year ago, though not all were linked to impaired driving.
District attorneys in El Dorado, Fresno, Kern, Placer, Sacramento, San Diego and Yolo counties took the unusual step of sounding the alarm Wednesday, days before Christmas.
California Highway Patrol figures show fatal crashes and victims increased steadily from 2018 through last year.