Law Enforcement Increasing Patrol for New Years Eve 12/30/12
CBS 7 News Reporter
December 30, 2012
MIDLAND COUNTY, TX – Local law enforcement officials are preparing for an increase in New Years Eve celebrations that could end the wrong way.
Now they’re taking extra measures to prevent this from happening.
"So we step our enforcement up around the holidays to go along with the high increased volume of traffic and also more calls of service," said Midland County Patrol Deputy John Maynard.
Deputies with the Midland County Sheriff's Office stated the population growth in the Basin has also lead to a growth in traffic. They stated that around the holidays more people hit the streets often intoxicated.
"You have people coming in for family, so you have an increase of traffic. You have an increased population …[and] an increased chance of people violating traffic laws, driving while intoxicated, drinking and celebrating a little bit to much," said Maynard.
According to the Midland-Odessa Transportation Alliance, in 2010 the crash fatality rate in the Permian Basin area was twice as high in comparison to major cities like Dallas and San Antonio.
MOTRAN reported, “You are 2.5 times more likely to be killed in a fatal crash in the Odessa district compared to the statewide average”.
Deputies reinstated that the slightest bit of alcohol impairs judgment, slowing down reaction time.
"They don’t realize what the alcohol does to their senses and it's very dangerous. We've worked quite a few accidents that were alcohol related and unfortunately some of those were fatalities," stated Maynard.
Now deputies, troopers, and officers are hitting the street in full force to protect West Texans on New Years Eve.
Deputies suggest designating a driver before attending festivities or call a taxi for a safe ride home.