December is National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention month, allowing us to raise awareness about this critical topic. With the holiday season in full swing, it is no wonder we see an increase in the number of drunk driving accidents and fatalities. The holiday season is festive with holiday parties aplenty, but this comes with inherent risks. If you are going to be partaking in all the fun cocktails and gatherings this month, be sure to have a plan for how to get home. Never get behind the wheel of a car after drinking or taking drugs of any kind. Not only can this pose a danger to you and your passengers, but others on the roadways as well.
Unfortunately, Texas leads the nation in drunk driving fatalities. To curb the number of injuries and deaths that happen as a result of drunk or drugged driving, our lawyers would like to dedicate today’s blog to preventing these devastating accidents. We love the holidays as much as the next person, but we also understand how deadly they can be.
If you have been injured or lost a loved one as a result of drunk driving, contact The Green Law Firm today. Our bilingual attorneys have extensive experience handling these types of cases and are prepared to do the same for you today. We are here to answer any questions you may have and help you seek justice. There is never an appropriate time to get behind the wheel of a car after drinking, as is seen through the devastating statistics we will go over below. Make smart decisions and encourage others to do the same this holiday season.
Drunk Driving Statistics
The National Safety Council estimates that more than 40,000 people die every single year in alcohol-related car accidents. Furthermore, the National Association of Drug Court Professionals states that the days between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day are the deadliest and “most dangerous” on U.S. city streets, highways, and rural roads because of alcohol-impaired driving. Drunk driving kills someone every 30 minutes in the United States, and these numbers are even more shocking during the holidays.
Because December is National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention month, there is no better time than the present to look at hard-hitting statistics about alcohol-related accidents. Before we go over how to prevent these devastating accidents from occurring this holiday season, let’s look at some shocking statistics:
- Impaired drivers cause 40 percent of traffic deaths over Christmas and New Year’s
- This is a 12 percent increase over the rest of the month
- 30 people die in the United States every day because of drunk driving
- That’s one person every 51 minutes
- On average, 300 people die from drunk driving accidents between Christmas and New Year’s
- In 2016, 781 people died in drunk driving accidents in December alone
- From 2012 to 2016, 14,472 people were killed in traffic accidents in December
- The number of alcohol-related fatalities increased from 2016 to 2017
- 2018 had 10,511 deaths from drunk driving accidents
Texas drunk driving statistics
As mentioned, Texas holds the number one spot for fatalities linked to drunk and drugged driving in the United States. This is not a distinction the Lone Star state would like to claim, but it is nonetheless the case. Here are a few statistics about drunk driving in Texas:
- In 2017, 910 fatal drunk driving accidents led to 1,024 fatalities
- 678 of these fatalities were the drivers
- 37 percent of alcohol-related driving fatalities involved people between the ages of 21 and 30
- In 2016, 2,300 Texans suffered incapacitating injuries due to drunk driving
- Houston leads the state in drunk driving crashes and fatalities (72 in 2017), followed by Dallas (70 deaths)
We hope these sobering statistics help you understand just how dangerous driving while impaired can be, regardless of what time of year it is. However, because we see such a dramatic increase in drunk driving accidents and deaths during the holidays, you must take extra precautions when driving this time of year.
How You Can Help Prevent Drunk and Drugged Driving
During the holidays, even people who don’t regularly imbibe in alcohol beverages like to have a drink or two. This can be problematic, as these individuals have a lower tolerance for alcohol and may decide to drive. However, people with a drinking problem are likely to drink more because they are around others who are drinking. Moreover, hazardous winter road conditions are often present, making for a deadly combination.
In honor of National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention month, here are some ways you can stop these deadly accidents from occurring:
- Designate a sober driver before you head out for the evening
- Use a rideshare service like Uber or Lyft
- Make arrangements to stay overnight
- Never let friends drive drunk! Stay persistent
- Educate teens and young adults on the dangers of drunk driving
- Give someone else your keys
- Never drink on an empty stomach
- Know your body and your limits
- Pace yourself when at holiday parties
- Stop drinking at least 90 minutes before you plan to leave
Drunk and drugged driving carries severe consequences, especially during the busy holiday season. There are several important steps you should take in the immediate aftermath of a car accident that will ensure you are protected. We hope the above tips will help you and your loved ones stay safe this holiday season. Raising awareness about the dangers of drunk and drugged driving is the first course of action in preventing these accidents. If you were in an accident caused by a drunk driver or want to learn more about preventing drunk driving, contact the Green Law Firm today.