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Police On Lookout For Drunken Drivers, Illegal Fireworks On July Fourth

Law enforcement officers in San Diego County will be on the lookout this Fourth of July for drunken drivers and illegal fireworks, sheriff's officials said.

San Diego firefighter on July Fourth.
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Above: San Diego firefighter on July Fourth.

Checkpoints are scheduled through the weekend, including one Saturday night in Coronado. Law enforcement officers throughout the county will also patrol for drunken drivers, sheriff's officials said in a statement.

"The Fourth of July is one of the deadliest holidays due to an increase in impaired-driving fatalities,'' Sheriff Bill Gore said. "Too many people die behind the wheel each year due to those who choose to drive after drinking, so we will be out in full force this Fourth of July showing zero tolerance for impaired drivers.''

Authorities will also be on the lookout for illegal fireworks, including bottle rockets, roman candles and firecrackers. Illegal fireworks can be turned over to the sheriff's Bomb/Arson Unit by calling (858) 565-5200.

Fireworks can cause burns, lacerations, amputations and blindness.

Sparklers can burn at a temperature hot enough to melt gold, sheriff's officials said in a statement.

A U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission study showed fireworks sent 9,600 people to emergency rooms last year, the statement read.

Fireworks can also cause grass and brush fires which can rapidly spread, sheriff's officials said, adding that lighting fireworks should be left to professionals.

Sheriff's officials advised of several road closures due to holiday events. All or part of following roads are slated to be closed this evening:

-- in San Marcos, Linda Vista Drive at Pacific and South Rancho Santa Fe Road;

-- in Valley Center, Betsworth Road at Lilac Road;

-- in Vista, Vale Terrace Drive between East Vista Way and Vale Terrace Place, along with several small side streets off Vale Terrace Drive;

-- in Poway, Espola Road between Twin Peaks and Old Coach roads; and -- in Encinitas, Solana Circle off Villa de la Valle.

Fourth of July festivities could cause heavy traffic on Mission Road in Fallbrook around 9:30 p.m. and on Lilac Road in Valley Center from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., sheriff's officials said.

In Imperial Beach, parking will be blocked on the west side of Seacoast Drive from Daisy Avenue to Imperial Beach Boulevard, along with both sides of Second Street from Palm Avenue to Imperial Beach Boulevard.

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