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San Antonio prevents DWI with free rides, no refusal



Bexar County, Texas, was one area implementing a “no refusal” policy on New Year’s Eve, but Triple-A also offered free rides home.

Bexar County DA Susan Reed was the driving force behind implementing a no refusal night. This meant any individual suspected of drunk driving was coerced into taking a breath or blood test by court order from 8PM Thursday night until the following day. In addition, the county put more officers on the road, looking for seat belt violation, speeders and cars with too many people in addition to signs of impairment.

In order to provide a valuable service to the community, however, Triple-A Texas did offer free rides throughout New Year’s Eve. The ride program started at 6PM Thursday and ran all the way to Friday at midnight. 

The program also included what is amiably called the “tipsy tow” service. Drivers who opted for the Triple-A program received a free tow of their car up to 10 miles away. As one additional incentive to help drivers stay safe, the county encouraged using the “Last Call” app for the iPhone to locate numbers for local cab companies.

While the no refusal policy is very controversial and often criticized, Bexar County deserves applause for its efforts to provide reasonable and cheap alternatives to getting behind the wheel. Using prevention along with enforcement often proves to be the best way to not just nab drunk drivers but prevent them from getting on the road in the first place.