Police target DUIs

Pierce County law enforcement will be aggressively patrolling the streets for impaired drivers during a 25-day enforcement campaign that starts today.

There are 172 agencies statewide participating in the annual Drive Hammered, Get Nailed program, which ends Sept. 6. That’s the most ever, said Lowell Porter, director of the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.

The effort is dedicated to Ryan Scott Seward, a career Coast Guard officer who was killed last August by a drunken driver in Puyallup.

Seward, 47, was riding his scooter home from work on 9th Street Southwest when he was hit by Larry White, who crossed the center line and hit Seward head-on before fleeing the scene. White since has pleaded guilty to vehicular manslaughter.

A brief ceremony for Seward will be held at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Puyallup City Hall, 333 S. Meridian.

Following the event, 25 law enforcement officers will go on patrol, with several of Seward’s family members riding along.

Traffic officials say the summer months are the most dangerous on the roadways. From 2005 to 2009, 62 people were killed in Pierce County from collisions involving impaired motorists.

Officers from the Bonney Lake, Edgewood, Fife, Fircrest, Gig Harbor, Lake-wood, Milton, Orting, Puyallup, Ruston, Sumner, Tacoma and University Place police departments as well as the Steilacoom Department of Public Safety, the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department and the Washington State Patrol are participating.