RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Fatalities and arrests in connection to driving while intoxicated (DWI) are on the rise across the Rio Grande Valley.

The Texas Department of Public Safety made 34 DWI arrests in Hidalgo County while one fatal accident occurred this past weekend between Friday and Saturday night.

Most of the 34 DWI arrests that occurred this weekend were in the McAllen-Edinburg area.

According to DPS, the fatal accident is believed to be alcohol-related pending investigation.

“Obviously, there has been a pattern,” Sergeant Maria Montalvo with DPS said. “We have zero tolerance, we will not tolerate this type of type of offense. You’re not only putting yourself at risk, but you’re putting innocent lives in harm’s way.”

Montalvo says DPS has been focusing on areas where there’s a high risk of fatal crashes involving alcohol.

“We focus on the entire RGV, however, we made a focus on particular areas to eliminate fatal crashes that we’ve been seeing here in the past few weeks. In the past few months, we’ve had an increase in fatalities involving an intoxicated driver,” Montalvo said.

DPS urges people to plan ahead in order to avoid driving while intoxicated or under any influence.

“The message here is do not get behind the wheel intoxicated. Make sure that you plan ahead or have somebody else driving back home. Because we will be out there you will get arrested and you will face charges,” Montalvo said.