DANIEL CLIFTON • PICAYUNE EDITOR
BURNET — While Spring Break means fun for thousands of people, it’s also a time of increased dangers on the road. So area law enforcement officers are stepping up their vigilance against drunk drivers and other hazards.
“Some people look at this time as an opportunity to get drunk, and, if they decide to do that in their own home, that can cause some discourse, but when they decide to take it on the road, it becomes a serious public safety issue,” Burnet County Sheriff W.T. Smith said. “The consequences from that can be irreversible, whether in the form of a criminal record that follows them the rest of their lives or hurting somebody or even causing another person’s death.”
To hopefully prevent those types of incidents, the sheriff’s office is stepping up patrols during the traditional Spring Break period of March 7-23.
The initiative specifically targets drunken or otherwise impaired drivers. Smith said he wants people to plan ahead if they are going to be drinking and either stay where they are, have a designated driver or arrange for another way home.
One provided ride that people would want to avoid is from a deputy or other law enforcement officer because it will likely end at the Burnet County Jail.
In 2012, Burnet County suffered one fatality and 38 injuries due to drinking and driving. Officials said 25 of those injuries were considered incapacitating.
“I don’t know if people really think much about drunk driving until it effects somebody in their family, whether the person is a perpetrator or a victim,” the sheriff said. “Unfortunately, if somebody gets injured or killed, it can leaving a impact that just ripples through a family. The best thing you can do is stay out of those situations in the first place.”