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Edinburg stepping up enforcement to catch drunk drivers

Local News

EDINBURG, Texas (KVEO) — Friday kicks off the three-day Labor Day weekend.

While people are out enjoying the weather, police officers will be out looking for drunk drivers.

“We don’t want the worst to happen in our city,” said Edinburg Information Officer Arielle Benedict.

TxDot reports Labor Day Weekend is one of the deadliest holidays for drunk driving accidents behind Memorial Day.

“With Labor Day weekend coming we always see an increase in calls with reckless drivers, intoxicated drivers, car crashes whether they be minor or major,” Officer Benedict said.

The pandemic has not decreased the fatality rate. Last year, TxDot reported more than 800 deaths from drunk driving, a trend Edinburg Officer Benedict believes they are close to hitting.

“Throughout our city they’ve remained consistent. Our officers are still pulling over intoxicated drivers, majority of the time on the weekends of course. We have consistently stopped DWI drivers which is a good thing for us,’’ Officer Benedict said.

In Edinburg, they deal with drinking and driving differently.

“Edinburg PD is a no refusal city when it comes to, if you are being pulled over for DWI. If the officer has probable cause and suspects you are intoxicated behind the wheel. You will be asked to provide a sample whether that be breathe or blood. If you refuse to blow and refuse to provide a sample what we do is we write up a warrant for a blood sample,” Officer Benedict said.

As people hit the road, officers urge people to use a ride sharing service or find a designated driver because one bad decision can lead to serious consequences.

“The officers, more than likely find you because that’s exactly what we’ll be looking for this weekend,” she said.

Driving while intoxicated for a first offence is a class B misdemeanor. If there are children under the age of 17 in the vehicle, the penalties are even higher with a longer jail time.

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