We are at the time of the year where everyone is talking about the holidays. Thanksgiving has passed, but Christmas and New Years are right around the corner. Unfortunately, this is also a time when families are mourning because they have lost a loved one due to the actions of a drunk driver. You may be wondering which holidays lead to the most DUI arrests.
#1 Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s
All of these holidays are lumped together as one, and they certainly constitute the period with the most DUI arrests. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that two to three times more people die in alcohol-related crashed between Thanksgiving and New Year’s than at any other point of the year. This is a time of year with family parties and company get-togethers, and there are plenty of police patrols and DUI checkpoints on the weekends during this time period. There were more than 1,500 total alcohol-related crash deaths during this time period in 2018, with similar projections for this year.
#2 Fourth of July
This is usually a party weekend for many people. When it comes to single weekend DUI arrests, the Fourth of July and New Years weekends are usually close. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 237 people were killed in drunk-driving crashes over the Fourth of July weekend in 2017.
#3 St. Patrick’s Day
This is simply a party weekend for many people. The green beer starts flowing, and many people head out to the bars or parades. All of this fun is okay, as long as it is safe. Unfortunately, there are typically many DUI arrests on St. Patrick’s Day.
#4 Memorial Day Weekend
The kickoff of Summer is filled with backyard cookouts, trips to restaurants, and jaunts to the bar. There are often plenty of DUI checkpoints on Memorial Day, as law enforcement knows that the drinking can get out of hand.
While many people think of Halloween as being just a kid’s holiday, that is not necessarily the case. Many adults, whether they have kids or not, participate in Halloween parties. Many of these parties involve plenty of alcohol. The NHTSA says that nearly half of all fatal car accidents on Halloween involve drunk drivers. Unfortunately, many of the victims of these fatal crashes as children.
Be safe and plan ahead
During the latest reporting year in Pennsylvania, there were 9,811 alcohol-related crashes during the latest reporting year. Out of those, there were 331 fatalities and 6,227 injuries. Over 28% of the total traffic fatalities during that reporting year were due to alcohol-related crashes.
If you are planning on drinking alcohol during the holidays, you need to make a plan. There are many safe ways to get from place to place. You can:
- Make sure you have a designated driver
- Call a taxicab to come get you
- Use a rideshare service like Uber or Lyft
The legal blood alcohol level for drivers in Pennsylvania is .08%, which is not many drinks for most people. However, even those who are driving buzzed but below the legal limit may still be too impaired to drive.
If you are hosting a party, make sure you help formulate a plan for getting your guests home safely.