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APD Stepping Up Drunk Driving Enforcement for New Year's

Several law enforcement agencies across Central Texas will be on patrol looking for drunk drivers during the upcoming holiday. The Austin Police Departmentwill start the third phase of its safety initiative next week.

“We don’t want to write tickets but we’re out there to do so. So plan ahead, and get a designated driver before you go to that party. If you don’t have a designated driver, then call a cab or call a friend,” says Robbie Barrera, a trooper with the Texas Department of Public Safety.

TheArrive Alive Central Texas/Home for the Holidays2013 program involves 15 Texas law enforcement agencies focused on decreasing the number of car accidents that occur during the holiday season.

Last year, 8 people died in traffic accidents during the holidays in Austin.

"The traffic fatalities so far this year as compared to 2012 has reduced from 8 to 5," says APD Lt. Robert Richman.

The holiday safety initiative will begin next Tuesday, December 31 and continue through Thursday, January 2.

As an alternative to getting behind the wheel, APD, Austin's Cap Metro and TxDOT, along with other local organizations are encouraging people to plan ahead for a sober ride home. 

Angela Tidwell, with Mothers Against Drunk Driving, says there are several companies that "will come and pick up your car and yourself and will drive your car home for a fee.”

“The main sober ride would be to try and call a taxi, plan ahead," says Tidwell.

For more information, check out the Sober Ride website.

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