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Joplin Chosen To Pilot New Anti DWI Program - KOAM TV 7

Joplin Chosen To Pilot New Anti DWI Program

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     Out of all the communities across the country...Joplin has been selected to pilot a new Anti DWI program.
     Part of that initiative includes getting members of the community to provide input.
     Something that was done earlier tonight.
The reason Joplin was chosen after a national selection process -- is because Joplin had the most annual DWI arrests.
409 last year compared to Missouri's average of 244 -- meaning, officers are doing a good job, but, Joplin has a problem, a problem the National Highway Traffic Administration hopes to solve.
Duncan: "For them to contact us for that program it's a big deal for us to try and step forward and work with them and use the resources they're bringing to us for a positive outcome for the community."
As for the some of the positive outcomes they're looking for...
Duncan: "This is a program where we're going to as a community try to come together to change the culture against impaired driving and insure that we have less people making the choice to drive while impaired."
And it's that culture change that encouraged Audrey Hubler to come out.
She's the Trauma Coordinator at Mercy Joplin and sees the impacts of impaired driving first hand.
Hubler: "The victims from drunk drivers, it's not usually the drunk driver that we see affected, you know, it's the other car that they hit, or the people in the vehicle with them."
The program is aimed at doing direct research to improve community outreach and education and to eliminate the community belief that lives lost due to drunk drivers are simply acceptable, or inevitable, and the potential for change, is motivation enough.
Hubler: "I have hope that maybe we can make a difference, and, see a decrease in that so that maybe some other children don't have to lose their mother, or father...or parents to lose their children."
     Tonight's meeting was one of several that will be held to ensure positive community input.
     Officials say they'll start seeing some changes by next May.
 

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Chris Warner
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A Joplin native, Chris first started in broadcasting at age 16 at KSNF-TV in 2004..

Chris joined the KOAM team in 2017 as an Associate Producer. In April, he moved into a full-time reporter position. He spent time from 2008 to 2016 in various retail roles around the region before returning to his passion at KOAM. Chris is excited to continue telling the stories of the four states. Chris and his wife Amber live in Joplin and have three amazing children.

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