Drunk and Impaired Driving is 100% Preventable this Holiday

Drunk and Impaired Driving in December

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” according to the old holiday standard but also the deadliest for drunk and impaired driving crashes. According to the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP), fatal crashes during the holiday season jump due to increased drunk and impaired driving.

For more than 35 years, every American President has officially designated December as National Impaired Driving Prevention Month. The unnecessary spike in fatal crashes corresponds with more people on the road out celebrating with alcohol, driving buzzed, drunk or impaired.

Holiday Drunk Driving Statistics

More deadly accidents caused by drunk and impaired drivers occur between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day than any other time of the year, making it the deadliest season of all on U. S. roadways. More than 40,200 Americans were killed in 2016 due to drunk and impaired driving crashes, with 2017 projected to exceed 2016’s staggering death toll.  That’s almost 100 fatalities a day!

Drunk Driving is Always a Choice

We need to share the personal responsibility to choose wisely before getting behind the wheel of a car or allowing a loved one or friend to drive while drunk or impaired. Here is how to choose wisely this holiday season.

  • Pledge never to drive drunk or impaired in any way, including never texting while driving.
  • Model safe driving behaviors for your children and never get behind the wheel drunk or impaired. Innocent potential victims are also in the car!
  • Plan ahead if you know you’ll be imbibing in holiday spirits, and make transportation arrangements before heading out to celebrate. Choose a designated driver who will not drink, or use a ride-sharing service like Lyft or Uber, or even an old-fashioned taxi to get you to and from your holiday parties worry-free.
  • Speak up if someone is too drunk or impaired to drive. Don’t remain silent for fear of offending someone, especially when lives are at stake.
  • Take away a drunk or impaired driver’s keys, and don’t let them get behind the wheel. If they do, call 911.  You will be just as likely to save their life as others.
  • If you see a drunk or impaired driver on the road, call 911 immediately.  Better to go to jail than to the morgue.

Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Safety Campaign

Local and state law enforcement officials will also be cracking down on drunk and impaired driving during their Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over public safety and awareness campaign in December. More police will be on the roadways from December 12 through 31 in an effort to bring awareness to and prevent deadly accidents due to, drunk and impaired driving.

Drunk and impaired driving graph of the predictable effects on driving by blood alcohol concentration.

Civil Liability and Criminal Punishment for Drunk Driving

You can also face a claim against you for civil damages and criminal penalties if you choose to drive drunk or impaired, especially if you cause an accident where people are injured or killed.  Why take the chance of ruining a wonderful holiday season, not to mention your own life or others’ lives, by ignoring the risks of drunk and impaired driving? Driving drunk or impaired affects not only you, but also your own family, and the families of others involved. So, spread the holiday cheer with proper planning and precaution to ensure the safest and happiest of seasons!