FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - The Franklin County Sheriff is fed up with what he calls a dangerous and growing problem. He says crashes caused by impaired drivers are on the rise and he's had enough. Recently, he went on Facebook to warn people in his county that if they get behind the wheel in no shape to drive they will go to jail. The effort began last Friday.
"Very first car we got was a DUI, it was a second offense DUI. It was aggravated circumstances, which means he went over .15," says Sheriff Pat Melton.
Sheriff Melton says their goal is to reduce impaired driving in Franklin County.
"For everybody that came through it, they also know we're out there," says Sheriff Melton. "We're out there looking, we're out there working and trying to make the roads safer for everybody."
One example of impaired driving that Sheriff Melton says sticks out in his mind is a crash that took the lives of three high school students in the spring of 2011.
"It's a terrible, terrible thing when you got to go knock on somebody's door and inform them that their loved one has been killed in a DUI-related crash," Sheriff Melton.
According to the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety, several counties in our viewing area are in the top 25 counties in the state for most impaired driving crashes between 2010 and 2012.
Fayette County tops the local list at number 2, Madison County comes in at number 9, Franklin County is 15th, Jessamine County is 16th, Laurel County is 18th, Pulaski County is 21st, Scott County is 22nd and Perry County rounds out the list at 25th.
"You're always going to have somebody who's going to make a bad choice or a poor decision. But, hopefully we're gonna be there and we're going to get them before they hurt themselves or somebody else," says Sheriff Melton.
The increased effort to curb impaired driving is possible, in part, because of grants from the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety and The Kentucky Sheriff's Association.