With the holiday season in full swing, it is an appropriate time to remind everyone to use caution if they plan on celebrating with alcohol.

The Missouri Highway Patrol reported that troopers more than doubled the number of drunk driving arrests this Christmas holiday over last year.

The Patrol will be out in force again conducting DWI checkpoints and saturation patrols over the New Year’s weekend. So will county deputies and municipal police.

Stepped-up traffic enforcement over the holidays is nothing new. Motorists have come to expect it. Yet police continue to make DWI arrests. It illustrates the magnitude of the problem.

Police say drunken driving is the No. 3 cause of traffic fatalities. That is a tragic statistic. Despite all of the public awareness campaigns over the years, people still routinely drink and drive.

The remedy for the problem is just as obvious: Think before you drink.

If you plan on drinking this holiday season, use a designated driver, or call a cab or a friend or relative.

Just don’t drive. Don’t be a statistic.