AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake Sheriff’s deputies will visit elementary, middle and high school classrooms as well as conduct drunk-driving checkpoints and run extra patrols looking for drunk drivers, officials said. The grant will pay for overtime for the work, as well as buy a trailer to use during checkpoints, and pay for bicycle safety and anti-drunk driving pamphlets and other information to be handed out to students and residents beginning early next year. Sheriff’s deputies will work with city staffers in producing the safety publications, Lt. Steve Fredericks said. Sheriff’s deputies will also conduct undercover sting operations aimed at deterring the purchase of alcohol by minors. Teenagers watched by deputies will be sent into local stores to try to buy alcohol, and also will approach people standing outside markets – the so-called “shoulder tap” sting – to ask them to buy alcohol. The program’s goals include reducing Lancaster’s annual traffic fatalities by 15 percent from the 14 killed last year, to reduce the number of bicyclists injured by 15 percent from 38 last year, and to reduce drunk-driving collisions 10 percent from 76 last year. LANCASTER – A $245,000 state grant will pay for education efforts and more sheriff’s patrols and other enforcement efforts aimed at combating a big increase in drunk-driving crashes and auto-bicycle collisions. Local officials applied for the grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety after Lancaster collisions jumped 20 percent from 2001 to 2003, including a 66 percent increase in collisions between bicycles and autos and an 81 percent increase in crashes caused by drunk drivers. “During the next two years, the city of Lancaster and the Lancaster sheriff’s station will use all available resources to ensure that our roadways are safe for the public,” Lancaster sheriff’s station Capt. Carl Deeley said in Tuesday’s announcement of the grant. Valleywide, traffic fatalities so far this year have hit 80, up from 74 last year and approaching the record 87 set in 2003. Another goal is to increase drunk-driving arrests on city streets by 15 percent, to 223. Charles F. Bostwick, (661) 267-5742 [email protected] local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!