DPS plans extra DWI patrols

December 19, 2012

Patrols seeking to curb driving while intoxicated will be stepped up during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays from Friday through Jan. 1, according to the Texas DPS.

DPS patrols will have troopers focus on high-risk locations when alcohol-related crashes occur most frequently. These enhanced patrols will be funded by a grant from the Texas Department of Transportation.

“Drinking and driving are always a concern during the holidays, and there is no doubt that increased enforcement by DPS and other law enforcement will help save lives,” DPS Director Steven McCraw said.

McCraw also emphasized that members of the general public need to do their part as well.

“Plan ahead,” McCraw said. “Designate a non-drinking driver or find alternative transportation if you plan to drink, and never get in a car with an intoxicated driver.”

Last year during the Christmas and New Year’s holiday enforcement by the DPS, troopers made more than 1,100 DWI arrests. Approximately 350 were the direct result of the increased patrols.

Also, DPS enforcement resulted in more than 15,000 speeding citations, 2,000 seat belt or child safety seat citations and 18,000 other citations. Troopers made 1,020 arrests of fugitives and 623 felony arrests during routine patrol operations.

Safety tips for drivers offered by the DPS include:

Slow down, especially in bad weather, construction areas, heavy traffic and unfamiliar areas.

Eliminate distractions. That includes not texting while driving.

Buckle up everyone in the vehicle. It’s the law.

Don’t drive while fatigued, and allow plenty of time to reach your destination.

Drive defensively. Holiday travel may present additional challenges.

Make sure your vehicle is properly maintained before starting a trip.

Slow down or move over for tow trucks, police, fire and EMS vehicles stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated. It’s the law.

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