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Dec 7, 2022

TABC working with retailers to ensure safe alcohol sales this holiday season

Agency makes educational materials, resources available for retailers and consumers

AUSTIN — As Texans prepare for a month of holiday celebrations, officials from the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission are reminding alcohol retailers to take steps now to prevent risky alcohol sales.

TABC agents are planning inspections across the state to ensure retailers are following the law when it comes to preventing sales of alcohol to minors or intoxicated patrons. Texas law prohibits alcohol sale or service to persons under 21 as well as those who are intoxicated.

“The holiday season is a time for celebration, but it’s important that Texas alcohol retailers and consumers understand the risks of improper alcohol sales or service,” TABC Executive Director Thomas Graham said. “Now is the best time, before the holiday season kicks into high gear, for business owners and managers to educate their staff on ways to prevent illegal alcohol sales.”

Alcohol-related accidents are among the largest drivers of fatalities on Texas roads. According to data from the Texas Department of Transportation, drunk driving was a factor in more than 24% of traffic deaths in 2021.

TABC’s website includes educational materials, and videos to help retailers recognize the warning signs of underage or intoxicated customers. Retailers can also sign up for the Retailer Education Awareness Program (REAP), a two-hour continuing education course hosted by TABC that teaches best practices for safe alcohol sales.

TABC’s site also includes resources for parents to learn more about the dangers of underage alcohol consumption, including new materials related to Texas laws prohibiting hosting parties for minors where alcohol is served.

“Parents are the first line of defense when it comes to preventing underage drinking,” Graham said. “This time of year is an excellent opportunity for parents to discuss the dangers of alcohol with their kids and help them avoid situations that could place lives at risk.”

Businesses found in violation of state alcohol laws could face a possible fine or a suspension of their license to sell alcohol. Individuals accused of illegally selling alcohol to minors or intoxicated persons could face misdemeanor charges resulting in a fine or jail time.

      Media contact:

      Chris Porter

      TABC Public Information Officer

      (512) 206-3462

      Educational resources