The Highway Traffic Safety Board awarded the Billings Police Department a $9,000 grant just in time for the holidays.

Wake Up Montana's Mary Jane Belleza sat down with the chief on how they plan to use this money.

Billings Police Chief Rich St. John said traffic issues surrounding Billings specifically DUI's is a significant problem.

He says we don't want a repeat of some of these catastrophes so the police department wants to use this money to increase their enforcement.

The grant money supplement their regular day to day budget and it specifies with the type of enforcement they're going to be looking for.

They will have a group of officers dedicated only to monitoring traffic enforcement during the holidays.

"They won't be called out to other calls, so their time will be 100 percent dedicated primarily to looking for impaired drivers and of course secondary offenses of seatbelts. Or anything else they might run into. Again it's our goal to get voluntary compliance from drivers," said Chief Rich St. John.

He adds the police department wants to ensure everyone get home safely, as there is no reason to drink and drive in this day and age, adding there are many outlets to get home such as Uber or Lyft or Tipsy Tow.

Wake Up Montana Reporter

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