Houston was relatively quiet over the Labor Day long weekend, a fact credited to the combined efforts of the sheriff’s department, city police departments and constables’ offices.
The multi-agency coverage for the long weekend ensured that many drunk drivers were taken off the roads, but it did not prevent intoxicated Texans from getting behind the wheel. Over the holiday, Harris County racked up a record, reporting 192 DUI arrests.
That number bears repeating – 192 arrests for driving while under the influence. One hundred and ninety-two individuals who made the negligent choice to drink too much and then climb behind the wheel of a vehicle. How many drove without being caught, injured or killed (this time)?
Texas has one of the worst records in the nation for DUI accidents. In 2012 alone, the state reported 89,256 DUI arrests, 1,296 deaths (up 7 percent from 2011 and rising each year), 16,882 alcohol-related crash injuries at 0.1 BAC or higher, and 25,761 alcohol-related crashes at 0.1 BAC or higher. Rates are climbing steadily.
If one crackdown in Harris County can net 192 drunk drivers, what would happen if all counties and police forces stepped up their enforcement of impaired driving laws?