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Austin Police Crackdown on Drunk Drivers
Extra police officers and state troopers will be on Central Texas roads patrolling for drunk drivers. It’s part of an ongoing holiday crackdown.
Over the weekend Austin police say they arrested more than 70 drivers on suspicion of drunk driving during their no refusal initiative.
Drivers who refuse a breathalyzer will be subject to a blood test. No-refusal is an enforcement tool police departments use across the state.
"We want to change the driving culture here in Austin,” said Austin Police Corporal Wuthipong Tantaksinanukij. “Austin has a lot of great things going for it, one of the things we don't have is the fatalities numbers that have increased.”
Eighty people have died in Austin this year – a quarter tied to alcohol.
With more than 70 arrests from no refusal in three days, people who live in Austin tell KEYE TV they would like to see the program run year round.
“I think it's a great thing. I'm a mother of two kids and I would like for them to crack down as much as they can on drunk drivers,” said Angela Koy.
Right now the department chooses target times to run the no refusal initiative. KEYE TV asked the Austin Police Department if they would consider implementing the program year round.
"I don't know if we're looking at it right now to go to a no refusal full time,” said Cpl. Wuthipong Tantaksinanukij. “That would be up to the chief and his staff to decide.”
The no refusal initiative runs through Tuesday at 5 a.m.