Alabama troopers plan extra patrols for sobriety

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Alabama's public safety director says motorists can expect extra patrols and sobriety checkpoints statewide during the Christmas and New Year's holidays.

Public Safety Director Christopher Murphy said troopers will focus on curtailing impaired driving.

The sobriety checkpoints begin Wednesday.

Murphy said a similar crackdown before Thanksgiving resulted in more than 2,200 traffic citations, including 75 citations for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Alabama had 15 traffic deaths during the long Christmas holiday weekend last year, and alcohol was a factor in at least seven of them.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.) AP-NY-12-17-08 0517EST