The numbers from Texas' statewide "No Refusal" drunk-driving enforcement campaign are still being calculated, but thus far, it is clear that hundreds of motorists were arrested on suspicion of driving drunk over the period of stepped-up enforcement.

The campaign, in which extra funds were used to get more law enforcement authorities out looking for suspected drunk drivers, ran from July 1 to the morning of July 5. Law enforcement authorities across the state arrested hundreds of people - 145 in Houston, 45 in Dallas, 115 in San Antonio and 73 in Austin, in addition to others in smaller communities.

This year's effort was larger than last year's, which ran for only a day. The campaign was run over the Fourth of July because it is traditionally one of the busiest times both for travel and for the number of drivers who allegedly drive drunk.

The numbers go to show that anyone accused of driving drunk should not feel alone. Law enforcement authorities are aggressively looking for people who might be driving while intoxicated, so any shame you might feel after being arrested should be moderated by the fact that DUI arrests are more common than you think.

As we mentioned in the last post, "No Refusal" included the controversial measure of not allowing people pulled over on suspicion of driving drunk to refuse field sobriety tests. While an argument for this policy can be made in favor of public safety, there is also something to be said for allowing people to maintain the freedom of their bodies from warrant-less searches.

Source: KVUE-TV, "Numbers for statewide 'No Refusal' holiday weekend released," 5 July 2011.