Over Christmas break we went to Colorado. We drove, which meant we had to drive through New Mexico. I was amazed by the number of signs urging people to call in drivers who they thought were driving while intoxicated. It seemed liked there was one every 5-10 miles.

There were so many signs I wondered whether people became immune to them. Although I probably saw 50 of them, I couldn’t begin to tell you what the hotline. I wonder if they have the same impact on New Mexico drivers. If you can’t remember what the number is, what good is.

I’m all for reporting drunk drivers – but I don’t understand why you need another number to do – besides 911. Do they get that many calls that they need a separate number? I find it hard to believe that most people don’t already know you should report people who you believe are driving while intoxicated. MADD has been extremely successful in demonizing drinking and driving – and convincing the public that its the major threat to public safety.

I wonder how many bogus call they get? Or calls made to get someone you don’t like in trouble. I also wonder how many tips are unfounded. A traffic stop is no small thing – even if you’ve done nothing wrong.

If you want to promote traffic safety how about signs that do that – like don’t speed, tailgate, change lanes without checking, cross railroad tracks without looking, or any other laws.

Walter Reaves
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Criminal Defense Attorney Walter Reaves has been practicing law for over 35 years.
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