Holiday Drinking and Driving Realities

With Thanksgiving less than a week away, we are all starting to feel the crunch of the holidays.  Christmas parties, family get-togethers and other social events pack the last 6 weeks of the year for most of us.  While it is a time of joy and comfort it can also be a deadly period.  The night before Thanksgiving can be one of the biggest drinking nights of the year.  Many people have Thanksgiving Day off and spend the night before celebrating.  In some cases, this may be a bigger drinking day than New Year’s Eve or St. Patrick’s Day particularly among college students.  Known as Blackout Wednesday, the night before Thanksgiving typically kicks off the “Holiday Drinking Period.”  This 6-week time period can be one of the deadliest of the year as more people are on the roads after drinking.  Many people drink more than they normally do during this period and too many have gotten on the roads after having a few drinks.

This statistic of heavier drinking also leads to more fatal accidents with nearly 40% of traffic-related deaths during the holidays being a result of drunk drivers.  This holiday drinking period is responsible for 2-3x the normal amount of alcohol related crashes.  The reality is that along with the fun and excitement of the holidays comes the responsibility to stay sober on the roads.  Many companies like AAA offer tipsy tow or other car ride services if you have had too much to drink.  Plan ahead and designate a sober driver.  Increase the incentive by offering to buy their dinner or being the designated driver at the next party.  Use services like Uber and Lyft.  Just don’t be part of the statistic that leaves families devastated.  Holiday travel is one of the busiest times on the road.  Your chances of getting in a car accident are greatly increased by the simple fact that there are a larger number of people on the road.  The more people on the road, the greater the chances that one of them has had too much to drink.  Think twice before getting behind the wheel.

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