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September 01, 2015

South Jersey town announces new designated driver program

Evesham Township officials announced Monday a new program that will help reduce drunk driving in the area.

At a press conference held Monday, Evesham Police Chief Christopher Chew said officials still talk about township resident Shawn English, who was killed in a drunk-driving crash six years ago.

He said police have arrested more than 1,000 individuals for DWI since 2010, reports. But the town wanted more ways to help bring residents home safely. With their 30-day pilot program called "Evesham Saving Lives," officials hope to end drunk driving by providing residents with free rides home. 

The township will operate a shuttle system that will make five stops near nine drinking establishments around town. The shuttles will run on weekend nights, and when people get on, the shuttle will take them straight home before going to the next stop, Chew said.

Sober Sam will also provide free rides for township residents and discounted rides for out-of-towners.

"This bold initiative further solidifies our township’s dedication to eradicate DWI/DUI offenses by providing an alternative to safely get home," Chew said in a statement. 

"Our police department is committed to dedicating our resources in DWI/DUI prevention efforts, along with our ongoing proactive apprehension initiatives. I firmly believe this commitment will have a significant impact in decreasing the amount of DWI/DUI crashes and fatalities that occur each year."

The program is part of a partnership with the Marlton Business District, the Evesham Township Celebration Foundation, Sober Sam, Mothers Against Drunk Driving and a grant from the New Jersey Department of Transportation.