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'Saving Lives Is Our Goal' | Maryland State Police Cracking Down On Drunk And Impaired Drivers For Fourth Of July Weekend

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Maryland State Police rely on a team of experts who are specially trained to reduce the number of drunk and impaired drivers.

"Making communities safer and saving lives is our ultimate goal," Major Roland Butler said.

One of the ways Maryland State Police does this is through its SPIDRE team-- which stands for State Police Impaired Driving Effort.

"Since their inception, they've arrested over 3,300 drunk or drugged drivers. That's quite an accomplishment for a small group of troopers across the state," Butler said.

Their specialized training and equipment allow them to spot and cut down the number of equipment allow them to spot and cut down the number of dangerous driving offenses.

A mobile alcohol testing truck, for example, gives police the flexibility to arrest and test an impaired driver on site.

"At the end of the day, these may be numbers that we talk about when we talk about traffic fatalities, but these are real people," said Chrissy Nizer, administrator for MDOT/MDA.

One person who knows this all too well is Brie Arnold.

"December of 2017, my 21-year-old little sister was struck and killed by a drunk driver," Arnold said.

Brie's sister, Taylor Halbeib, was a full-time student and an aspiring police officer.

"Just one of those people you meet and you can't help but like," Arnold said.

Since her sister's death, Brie devotes her life to reminding others that her tragedy is preventable.

"Think about your own family, your loved ones, your best friend, your brother, your sister, your parents and what it would be like in my situation," Arnold said.

MDOT suggests planning ahead when it comes to transportation, including thinking about whether you want to use Uber or Lyft or public transit, or designating a sober driver before heading out for the night.

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