November 1, 2011
In an effort to keep drunk drivers off the roads over the Halloween weekend, the Austin Police Department enacted a no refusal weekend, in which officers can obtain search warrants for blood samples from drivers who refuse blood alcohol testing. According to KVUE News, the campaign was successful in netting 59 arrests over a four-day period.
Officers say they arrested 16 individuals Friday, 15 Saturday, another 16 Sunday, and 12 people Halloween night. That is more than double the 25 drunk drivers who were arrested during the last no refusal campaign over the Fourth of July weekend.
The campaign has seen great success in helping lawmakers get Texas off the top of the list as the deadliest state for DUI related fatalities. They say nearly half of all drivers refuse blood or breath during a DUI investigation. No refusal campaigns end this by allowing officers to quickly obtain warrants from judges for samples from any driver refusing. Often times warrants can be obtained onsite, but are normally waiting for the officer when they bring the driver to headquarters for booking.