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Troopers say driving while impaired with kids in the vehicle is a growing problem in the mountains.
A recent driving while impaired case involving children passengers happened Sunday afternoon in Etowah, on Brickyard Road near the Turnpike Road intersection. Trooper Gene Williamson says cases like this are increasing in the region, not so much from alcohol, but from prescription and illegal drugs.
The three little girls in the car were treated for minor injuries, while their mom faces multiple misdemeanor charges, including DWI for drugs.
Ellen Pitt, president of Mother's Against Drunk Driving in Western North Carolina, says the punishment is not enough. Pitt is pushing for felony charges for anyone charged with a DWI while children are in their vehicle.
Trooper Williamson urges families to get involved, especially if the person on painkillers or prescription drugs is a single parent. He says concerned family members should not hesitate to call 911 to get that person stopped, if they insist on driving.
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