We've all heard the warning, drink responsibly. But with the holidays just around the corner, local authorities are adding some muscle to the message.
"You see more DWI related car crashes during Christmas and New Years. New Years more so. It is the worst holiday time period we have in Texas," said DPS Trooper, Eddie Carmen.
But drunk drivers aren't the only ones College Station police are going after. Police say they have their hands full with other alcohol law breakers who sometimes never set foot in a car.
Last month alone 228 people were charged with alcohol violations. Thirty-three DWI arrests were made and a whopping 146 tickets were given to minors in possession of alcohol.
"A lot of our reports on alcohol enforcement are citizens calling in letting us know, for instance, if there's a loud party in the neighborhood. Officers are aware in their beats of clubs that they need to be monitoring," said College Station Police spokesman, Mark Langwell.
Over in Bryan there are fewer alcohol-related arrests, but it's still a problem. Last month 18 DWI arrests were made and 22 minor in possession tickets were issued.
The inflated alcohol arrest numbers can be attributed to a more aggressive attitude by local law enforcement. Police now conduct routine bar checks to make sure night spots are in compliance.
The Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission is initiating bi-monthly sting operations looking for those buying booze for minors and underage drinkers.
"We feel like if we can make an impact on intoxicated persons that are sold to, people who are sold to pass the point of intoxication, then certainly it will make an impact on the DWI stats in the area," said Mitch Dill with TABC.
This time last year, 521 alcohol-related accidents occurred in our region. Authorities believe that number can be reduced by stopping young people from drinking illegally in the first place.
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