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Published November 23, 2011, 10:06 PM

Too Much Cheer During The Holiday Season

GRAND FORKS, ND (WDAZ-TV) - As people get ready to enjoy Turkey Day, the police department wants to remind people to use extra caution on the road and at home. Many people celebrate this time of year with alcohol, and too much can be a bad thing.

GRAND FORKS, ND (WDAZ-TV) - As people get ready to enjoy Turkey Day, the police department wants to remind people to use extra caution on the road and at home. Many people celebrate this time of year with alcohol, and too much can be a bad thing.

Lieutenant Grant Schiller of the Grand Forks Police Department says his police force has extra patrols out on the streets during the holiday season, but drunk driving isn't the only alcohol related situation they're worried about.

As the Holiday season is in full swing, so is the holiday cheer. But too much cheer could put some behind bars.

"What usually happens is when they do get to these locations they'll have a couple holiday spirits and then want to head back home but we just caution people to be very careful on the roadways this weekend," said Lieutenant Grant Schiller.

"It's not a problem to enjoy the holiday season but to be responsible if they know they're going to go out to a party to have a designated driver...There really is no excuse to drive drunk with the amount of available transportation to you to get home," said Lieutenant Mark Nelson.

The city of Grand Forks goes takes extra precautions each year to ensure that bartenders are well aware of when to cut people off, and if this situation occurs, that they have a safe ride home.

"The key point to this is the relationships that we've cemented with the actual bar owners before hand so rather than having to take enforcement a lot of self policing goes on with the actual establishments recognizing not to over serve," said Lieutenant Mark Nelson.

"Slurring, stumbling, you know if someone's being louder than the rest of the group or being obnoxious...you know when its time that they've had enough and get them home safely," said Curtis Miller, Joe Black's Manager.

"I think the key to prevent it is at the point of sale and point of consumption," said Lieutenant Mark Nelson.

Drunk driving isn't the only issue during the holidays.

"Family gets together and sometimes that may not go so well and we'll see a slight increase in domestic violence over the weekend," said Lieutenant Grant Schiller.

In 2010, 783 cases were reported, and this year the city has had a consistent number and police expect an increase over the weekend.

"These instances will go hand and hand and thats why we don't want to narrow alcohol only to driving...You can enjoy yourself in moderation but there is no excuse for domestic violence resulting from any reason," said Lieutenant Mark Nelson.

Alcohol plays a major role in many cases the Police see over the holidays. They just ask for people to realize the real spirit of the holiday season.

"Be smart be responsible and just enjoy the holiday season for the reasons in which they're meant to be enjoyed," said Lieutenant Mark Nelson.

Another increase the police department sees is motor vehicle theft from people leaving keys in the ignition during the cold weather.

Thanksgiving eve is the night underage drinking skyrockets. The Thanksgiving holiday weekend is often one of the deadliest on roads.

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