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Southlake Police See Increase in Intoxicated Wrong Way Drivers

A wrong way driver on Highway 114 was caught on a police officer’s dash camera Tuesday morning.

Southlake Police showed NBC 5 the video where you can see a suspected drunk driver traveling in the far left lane of the highway going the wrong direction around 1 a.m. Tuesday.

Police said it took around five minutes to stop the driver. No one was injured and the  driver was arrested.

Southlake Police Chief James Brandon said they have seen an increase in wrong way drivers in Southlake over the past couple of years.

“Our numbers from 2016 on have doubled on wrong way drivers,” Brandon said.

He said in 2016, there were 20 wrong way drivers reported on roads in Southlake.

By 2017, there were 42.

Police said the top spots for wrong ways drivers were on 114 and Southlake Boulevard.

Southlake police is working with the Texas Department of Transportation to prevent these incidents.

“Anything that we can do that has been shown to work to try to keep people safe,” Brandon said.

For the past year, the Fort Worth branch of TxDOT has been testing everything from lowering wrong way signs, trying flashing wrong way signs, and adding red pavement markers to warn wrong-way drivers before they enter roadways.

Southlake police have also reclassified wrong way driver calls as “priority one calls.”

“For us that's a life endangering call. If you're hurt or bleeding, if you're lives in danger… that's a call we are going to respond to in lights and sirens," Brandon said.

Police said that most of the time intoxicated wrong way drivers think they are in the far-right slow lane. They advise drivers traveling in the dark, to try avoiding the far left lane.

If you see a driver going the wrong direction, call 911.

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