HPD on alert for prom night
Staff Report, Hartselle Enquirer
Chief Ron Merkh said even though prom night incidents in Hartselle have been sparse in recent years, the Hartselle Police Department is currently working to prepare students and officers for potential accidents through Operation Prom Night.
Operation Prom Night is an effort to educate prom-age students of the potential hazards of mixing intoxicating substances and prom night and the enforcement of laws regarding underage drinking and drug use.
HPD Schools Officer Michael Hudson will distribute printed materials and talk to Hartselle High School students before the school's prom next Thursday, March 20.
"Our desire is to promote safety and to ensure students have a great prom without incident," Hudson said.
Through a combined law enforcement effort, vehicle checkpoints will be set up at various locations where students are likely to travel on prom night. The object is to locate and arrest anyone who may violate the law while behind the wheel.
"The most important thing for students to do on prom night is to not drink and drive," Merkh said. "Operation Prom Night is one great way to make sure that doesn't happen."
The emphasis of the program lies in holding those who drink and drive accountable for their actions with the sternest of consequences. Drivers under the age of 21 are reminded that any alcohol detected in their systems while operating a motor vehicle will subject them to arrest.
Sponsors of Operation Prom Night include the Hartselle Police Department, Decatur Police Department, Morgan County Sheriff's Department, Alabama State Troopers, Alabama Beverage Control Board, and the Morgan County Substance Abuse Network.