BOUNTIFUL -- A man who survived a Christmas Eve automobile crash five years ago that killed his wife and two of his children has helped kick off Utah's holiday DUI enforcement blitz.
Gary Ceran had a clear message for those who might consider getting behind the wheel while drunk: "If you get hammered, you're going to get nailed."
Ceran was flanked by dozens of officers Friday in Bountiful as he described the 2006 Taylorsville crash that killed his wife, Cheryl, and two of his children, the Deseret News reported (http://bit.ly/sqWfKw ). His other two children survived.
Carlos Prieto pleaded guilty to three counts of automobile homicide and was sentenced to up to 10 years in prison after running a red light and slamming into the family's van.
"You never think it's going to happen to you," Ceran said. "You never think that you're going to be the one that's the victim."
Utah Highway Patrol Superintendent Col. Danny Fuhr said law enforcement officers across Utah will be working thousands of extra hours through New Year's Day to arrest drunken drivers.
A similar enforcement blitz over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend netted 82 DUI arrests.
Gov. Gary Herbert said while Utah ranks No. 1 in the nation for the fewest number of alcohol-related fatalities, more can be done to prevent them.
The Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control sees a 50 percent spike in liquor sales in December, he said, and state statistics show DUI crashes are more than three times likely to result in a death.
"We don't want to have our happy holiday season marred by an annual unmemorable event that somebody in our family's been killed or maimed," Herbert said.