Drive safe, sober: Police step up patrols during holidays
Published 12:10 am Saturday, December 28, 2019
Law enforcement across the state is stepping up enforcement and reminding drivers to stay sober this holiday season.
The Texas Department of Transportation is stressing “Plan while you can” and “Drink. Drive. Go to jail.”
Approximately 1,000 people in Texas are killed in alcohol-related crashes every year. A DWI costs up to $17,000 in fines and fees, jail time and you can lose your license, according to TxDOT’s SoberRides.org
Tips from TxDOT
- Plan ahead so you get home safely. Once you start drinking, it’s easy to be misled that you’re OK to drive. Consuming alcohol can impair judgment. As a result, people may think they’re OK to drive when they are not.
- Alcohol slows a driver’s reaction time, reduces their ability to properly gauge speed or distance from other objects and makes it difficult to focus on the road. Sometimes, one or two drinks are all it takes to impair someone’s ability to drive. The more you drink, the greater the effect.
Better safe than sorry
Texas law makes it illegal for someone with a blood alcohol content — or BAC — of .08 percent or higher to drive a vehicle. Some people reach this limit after only one or two drinks, depending on body size and other factors. Driving “buzzed” with a BAC less than 0.08 can also be a form of impaired driving and dangerous. Drivers can be stopped and arrested by law enforcement when impaired — regardless of BAC. Impaired drivers risk killing, disabling, disfiguring and injuring themselves and others.
Plan a sober ride
Planning ahead for a sober ride is the best way to ensure you get home safely. Don’t wait until after you have started drinking. Designate a driver or arrange for someone you trust to pick you up.
That also applies to others you know. If you know someone who is about to drive impaired, take their keys and find them a sober ride home.
Go to SoberRides.org for more information.
Texas Department of Public Safety
The DPS asks motorists to do their part to keep the season safe by practicing safe driving habits and using extra caution when traveling on Texas roadways.
“The holiday season gives us many reasons to celebrate with friends and family, and it’s up to every one of us to make sure that we do so responsibly, including driving without distractions and obeying traffic laws as we travel during the New Year’s holidays,” DPS Director Steven McCraw said. “DPS Troopers will increase their patrols along with many other law enforcement partners across the state throughout the remainder of the year.”