Nov. 25, 2009
To the editor:
On Nov. 5, according to police reports, Lori Phillips crashed head-on into the car driven by Louis Clement and his fiancé Joyua Stovall on the Seward Highway, killing Louis and seriously injuring Joyua. Phillips’ blood-alcohol content reportedly was more than four times the legal limit. According to a witness, she was drunk when she arrived at a hair salon and continued drinking there before the crash.
This egregious scene begs the questions: “What can we do to keep an impaired person from getting into a vehicle and driving away? What is our responsibility when we see something like this happening?”
There are no pat answers to the first question. But in the above situation, the police should have been called when Phillips first walked into the salon, because, according to this witness, she already was drunk when she drove into the salon parking lot.
Call the police with a REDDI report — Report Every Drunk Driver Immediately — and let them handle it. Don’t wait for someone else to take action.
As to the second question, we all have a moral and community obligation to do what we can without putting ourselves in harm’s way. Check our Web site at www.forgetmenotmission.com for more information about the DUI plague in Alaska and what we are trying to do about it.
With 5,888 DUI incidents in 2008, our law enforcement agencies are doing a great job of nabbing drunken drivers every day, but it is everyone’s responsibility to try to keep them from getting behind the wheel.