On February 18, 2014, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), recognized East Bay police officers in Alameda and Contra Costa County for their enforcement against drunk drivers. As part of MADD's AVOID campaign to help reduce the number of deaths and injuries caused to California drivers due to impaired drivers, each police agency in the state tracks their DUI arrests. At Alameda PD, Officers David Lloyd and Officers Viet Pham, were recognized for their number of arrests for the year 2013. To be recognized by MADD, an officer needs to have 25 or more arrests in a calendar year. Officer Lloyd had 36 arrests and Officer Pham had 26 arrests.
MADD's AVOID Campaign covers 42 of the State's 58 counties, and in addition to enforcement, the AVOID campaign raises public awareness by visiting schools, doing victim awareness, and by engaging in speaking events through various community groups/organizations. At this year's MADD recognition event, parents of Scott Leister, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2008 were on hand to speak to the officers. Scott was killed by a drunk driver who was driving over 100 mph on the Bay Bridge when the car occupied by Scott and three others was rear ended. Scott was a remarkable individual. He was a graduate of the Athenian School in Danville, was a Fulbright Scholar at University of Rochester, had planted "Peace Trees" in place of land mines in Vietnam, built homes for orphans in the Dominican Republic, participated in building housing in Alameda with Habitat for Humanity in 2008, was a Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician, and was intending to pursue a medical degree to further his sense of international humanitarianism. Scott was 21 when he was killed. Below is a link to the CHP awareness video honoring Scott and his parents.
Along with being presented a plaque honoring their enforcement efforts, Officer Lloyd and Officer Pham received a red "23152" pin which they can wear on their uniforms. The red symbolizes MADD's mission, honoring those who have been inured or killed in impaired driving collisions. The "23152" represents the California Vehicle Code for driving while impaired. APD is proud of the accomplishments by Officers Lloyd and Pham and Traffic Lieutenant Don Owyang and Traffic Sergeant Ron Simmons were on hand for their presentations.
Every 51 minutes in the US, a person dies due to a drunk driver. Every 90 seconds, a person is injured in a drunk driving crash. Drunk driving costs the US $132 billion a year. Drunk driving is the #1 killer for persons ages 2 - 34. In 2011, 226 children were killed in drunk driving crashes, where 54% were passengers of the drunk driver. These were some of the sobering statistics put forth by MADD at this luncheon making APD realize more work needs to be done. APD wants to remind everyone, not to drive while impaired.