Program Overview

Mission Statement

To develop and coordinate a comprehensive DWI counter-measure program to deter the incidence of drunk driving and the occurrence of alcohol related traffic injuries and fatalities.


Program Description

STOP-DWI stands for "Special Traffic Options Program for Driving While Intoxicated". The STOP-DWI Program was enacted by the State Legislature in 1981 for the purposes of empowering county governments to coordinate local efforts to reduce alcohol and other drug-related traffic crashes within the context of a comprehensive and financially self-sustaining alcohol and highway safety
program.


Broome County STOP-DWI – A Success Story

The Broome County STOP-DWI Program's mission is to improve highway safety through the prevention of drunk driving in our community. As a result of STOP-DWI's comprehensive effort, Broome County has achieved much success in the effort to combat drunk driving: many lives have been saved; the number of people seriously injured has been dramatically reduced and cultural attitudes concerning drinking and driving have changed.

Key to the success of Broome County's STOP-DWI efforts has been the continued focus on the core components of the program: law enforcement, prosecution and education/public awareness. Broome County has reduced the incidence of driving while intoxicated by maintaining a highly visible law enforcement campaign, supporting prosecution efforts, lobbying for tougher laws to deal with DWI offenders while developing an education and public awareness campaign to keep the issue out in front of the public. 

Pursuant to Article 31 Section 1197 of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law, the Broome County STOP-DWI Program develops and coordinates a comprehensive DWI countermeasures program - that places a priority on general deterrence – the prevention of drunk driving through the increased certainty of arrest and conviction. To that end, STOP-DWI funds extra police patrols that are dedicated to DWI enforcement. STOP-DWI also provides specialized breath testing equipment and video cameras to police agencies as well. The District Attorney's office receives funds to hire an additional prosecutor to specialize in DWI cases. STOP-DWI also funds a position with the Broome County Probation Department to deal with recidivist DWI offenders.

In addition, STOP-DWI funds a large print and electronic media campaign in order to heighten awareness and educate the public about the dangers of drunk driving, the increased certainty of arrest and harsh penalties one faces if convicted.

STOP-DWI also sponsors numerous training seminars for prosecutors, police, educators and treatment professionals who deal with various aspects of the drunk driving issues. STOP-DWI works with the private sector, local school districts, not for profit organizations and the Drinking Driver Program to conduct outreach programs and community based education efforts. The STOP-DWI Program also sponsors the STOP-DWI Holiday Classic (basketball tournament), the STOP-DWI Tournament of Champions (girls softball tournament), and the Chris Thater Memorial (cycling and running event) using the popularity of sports to further promote the STOP-DWI message.

STOP-DWI operates under 15NYCRR Part 172 of the Commissioner’s Rules and Regulations which limits funding to only enhancement programs, which reduce the incidence of impaired driving. Broome County’s STOP-DWI Program is supported entirely by the fines paid by people convicted of driving while intoxicated and aggravated unlicensed operation (alcohol related) and the monthly supervision fees paid by those sentenced to Probation for DWI.


Funding

STOP-DWI funding is limited to enhancement programs which reduce the incidence of drunk driving. The program is supported entirely by the fines paid by people convicted of driving while intoxicated and from monthly supervision fees paid by people serving a sentence of probation as a result of their DWI conviction.


Law Enforcement, Prosecution, & Probation Component:

  • Continue the high visibility STOP-DWI Task Force Program involving specially marked patrol vehicles and overtime patrols that are dedicatedto DWI enforcement. Continue to participate in the statewide STOP-DWI Crackdown Campaign.
  • Continue to support the video tape program in which DWI offenders are video taped at
    the scene of arrest and at police stations.
  • Purchase specialized breath testing equipment and supplies for DWI enforcement.
  • Support specialized crash investigation and accident reconstruction efforts among Broome County's law enforcement agencies.
  • Support the Standard Field Sobriety Testing (SFST), Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE) and Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) Programs that help police officers identify the alcohol and/or drug impaired driver.
  • Continue the STOP-DWI Prosecution Program with the Broome County District Attorney's Office.
  • Continue the STOP-DWI Probation Program with the Broome County Probation Department.
  • Continue funding an in-house drug testing program for DWI Probationers.

Education and Public Awareness Component:

  • Continue specialized education programs for enforcement, prosecution, education and treatment professionals who deal with various aspects of the impaired driving issue.
  • Continue to offer the TIPS Alcohol Server Training Program to on-premise (bars, taverns) and off-premise (caterers) establishments and to work with licensed establishments on the prevention of impaired driving.
  • Conduct community outreach via public speaking engagements, presenting booths at health fairs and trade shows and by making available videos, displays and printed materials to schools and other organizations.
  • Continue to support education and public awareness activities in area middle and high schools.
  • Conduct a comprehensive electronic and print advertising campaign to promote awareness about the DWI issue.
  • Conduct special projects/events such as the Mirabito STOP-DWI Holiday Classic, STOP-DWI Tournament of Champions and the Chris Thater Memorial to further promote the STOP-DWI and healthy lifestyles message to youth and the community.

Administrative/Evaluation Component:

  • Work with the STOP-DWI Advisory Board, local officials and public and private community organizations to develop and coordinate a comprehensive DWI countermeasure program.
  • Monitor and evaluate traffic accident, arrest and conviction data to assess the effectiveness of Broome County’s STOP-DWI effort.
  • Seek private/corporate sponsorship to help finance education and promotional efforts.

Program Highlights:

  • During the 1980’s on average 13 people died each year due to impaired driving. In the  
    1990’s the annual average declined to 5 per year. Since 2000 Broome County has 
    averaged 3 DWI fatals per year. In 2012 one person was killed as a result of impaired driving. 
  • The average annual number of people seriously injured in alcohol related motor vehicle crashes from 2000 – 2008 represents a 69% reduction from annual averages prior to STOP-DWI (1979 – 1981) and 31% below the annual average for the 1990’s. In 2008, 85 people were seriously injured as a result of impaired driving – 52% below the annual averages of the 1990’s.
  • The average annual number of nighttime personal injury and fatal crashes (6pm – 6am) from 2000 – 2007 (428) represents a 54% reduction from the annual average prior to STOP-DWI (925 annual average for the period 1976 – 1981) and a 25% reduction from the annual average of 572 during the 1990’s.
  • The average annual number of weekend nighttime fatal and personal injury crashes from
    2001 – 2007 (153) represents a 29% reduction from the annual average of 216 during the 1990’s.
  • The Broome County District Attorney’s Office has one of the top conviction rates for drunk driving offenses in New York State (ranks 3 out of 62 counties). 2011 data.
  • Broome County Law Enforcement Agencies, the New York State Police and Binghamton University Police and New York State Park Police deployed dedicated DWI patrols, conduct DWI check points, undertake underage sting operations and video tape DWI suspects in an effort to prevent drunk driving.
  • The Broome County Probation Department operates a specialized DWI Probation Unit and employs electronic monitoring, alcohol monitoring devices, ignition interlock, random drug testing and other technologies/innovative methods to supervise the DWI offender.
  • The Broome County STOP-DWI Program has earned a statewide reputation for its multi-media STOP-DWI public awareness campaign and the numerous community events it promotes to draw attention to the drunk driving problem.
  • STOP-DWI Holiday Classic is rated one of the top high school boys basketball tournaments in the United States. Received the L. Richard Novelli Award as the outstanding alcohol education/prevention program in New York State in 1994.
  • Chris Thater Memorial, held in memory of a DWI victim, is one of North America’s top pro cycling events. The event also includes a national caliber 5K Run. Received the L. Richard Novelli Award as the outstanding alcohol education/prevention program in New York State in 2001