The Texarkana, Ark., Police Department is urging residents not to drink and drive this holiday season.

Authorities say the holidays are a time for celebration, a time for visiting with loved ones, and and a time for reflecting on the year past and the year ahead. Yet all too often, the holiday spirit is destroyed by the recklessness of a drunk driver.

The Texarkana, Ark., Police Department is joining other local, county, and state law enforcement agencies across the country starting December 18 through January 3  to remind everyone that drunk driving and/or driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs during the holiday season just don’t mix.

“Whether you’ve had one or one too many -- drinking and driving is never worth the risk,” said Chief Robert H. Harrison.  “If you are going to drink, designate a sober driver before the party starts, and encourage your friends and family to always do the same.  We want you to be able to spend Christmas and New Year's with your family and friends, rather than in a hospital or jail cell.  This agency adheres to a zero tolerance policy when it comes to alcohol use when operating a motor vehicle on city streets."

TAPD is encouraging people to take steps to ensure their holiday celebrations don’t end in tragedy.  The department's DWI Traffic Safety Grant provides for additional patrol officers to work DWI check points and DWI/speed enforcement shifts during the holiday season.

Make sure you stay safe this holiday season by following these tips:

  • Designate a sober driver before the celebrations begin; plan a way to get home safely if you’ve been drinking.
  • If you are impaired, call a taxi, phone a sober friend or family member.
  • Be responsible. If someone you know is drinking, do not let that person get behind the wheel.

If you see an impaired driver on the road, contact law enforcement. Your actions may save someone’s life, and inaction could cost a life.