Police: Nearly 4 dozen holiday DWI arrests

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The number of drunken driving arrests around Thanksgiving climbed to nearly four dozen in Nassau and Suffolk counties, authorities said Friday morning.

Nassau police charged three people with driving while intoxicated between 7 a.m. Thursday and 7 a.m. Friday. Suffolk police figures for the same period were not immediately available.

Southold Town police charged two cousins with drunken driving after a fender-bender at 12:01 a.m. Friday.

At least 42 people were arrested on drunken driving charges by the Nassau and Suffolk police departments from Wednesday afternoon to Thursday morning.

The crackdown on drunken driving will continue throughout the Thanksgiving weekend, Suffolk and Nassau authorities said.

In Nassau, 23 people were arrested between 7 p.m. Wednesday and 7 a.m. Thursday, according to department spokesman Det. Vincent Garcia.

In Suffolk, 19 people were arrested between 3 p.m. Wednesday and 7 a.m. Thursday, a spokeswoman said.

These totals may not include all the forces outside the county police districts, such as those on the East End, which process their own arrests.

Last year over a similar period, there were at least 13 drunken-driving arrests in Suffolk and 30 in Nassau.

Thanksgiving Day totals from all police agencies on the Island were not available Friday night.

Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano said 50 additional patrol vehicles will be on the roads looking for drunken drivers.

In Suffolk County, Thanksgiving Eve kicked off a five-week plan -- through New Year's Day -- designed to get intoxicated or impaired drivers off the road. There were enhanced patrols at malls and shopping centers for Black Friday, officials said.

Last year during Thanksgiving weekend, Nassau police made 71 arrests on charges of driving while intoxicated and Suffolk made 69.

With Matthew Chayes and Kery Murakami

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