Apr 4, 2014 6:39 PM
Drinking and driving in the Chico area has always been a problem, but this year it's gotten out of hand.
In the first three months of 2014, the California Highway Patrol has already handled 22 DUI-related traffic collisions in the Chico area. That's quite the spike compared to last year when they responded to 74.
Perhaps the scariest statistic: the number of lives lost in DUI crashes has already doubled from two last year to four in the first three months of this year.
“We see underage drinking, we see people my age, people who are older so it’s everybody,” CHP officer Adriana Warner said of people involved in recent DUI traffic collisions.
“This is a college town,” Warner added. “We have our fair share of bars downtown and throughout the city. Alcohol is accessible to teens, to everybody.”
At Bella's Sports Pub in Chico, bartender Jordan Raber keeps a watchful eye customers and does her best to get them home safely.
“If they need help getting out of here we’ll call them a cab,” she said. “We’ll try to make sure they have someone safe to go home with.”