Transportation

Police Gauge Effectiveness Of Holiday DWI Patrols

Authorities are still tallying up the numbers from their enforcement efforts over Christmas and New Year’s. Meanwhile, Houston police are looking into whether alcohol was a factor in four fatal crashes this past weekend.

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As Texas works to stem the highest DWI fatality rates in the nation, many departments had extra officers on the road for the long holiday weekend.

That includes the Department of Public Safety. In the Houston region, DPS troopers patrol the area from the Harris-Montgomery County line south to Galveston.

“There were some crashes,” says DPS Trooper Richard Standifer. “But in our hearts we feel we’ve lowered the amount of crashes due to the arrests that were made.”

Standifer says incidents included a slow-speed chase in north Harris County on New Year’s Eve. The driver later told authorities he’d been doing meth earlier in the day.

“There were several county units behind him, several HPD units behind him, and then DPS came up and they were able to stop the pursuit by shooting the tires out,” says Standifer.

Here in Houston, a total of four people were killed in separate crashes over the New Year’s weekend. Investigators are now looking into whether drugs or alcohol played a role. All those crashes involved single vehicles.

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Gail Delaughter

Gail Delaughter

Transportation Reporter

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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