The Department of Transportation last week released new statistics, which show that the daily death toll from drunk driving crashes is significantly higher during the holiday season.
Data released by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration shows that between 2001 and 2005, there were about 36 deaths a day as a result of an alcohol-impaired driver. That number increases to 45 per day during the Christmas holidays and skyrockets to 54 per day during the New Year’s holiday, the report says. It also states that 38 percent of all traffic fatalities during Christmas involved someone driving under the influence and that number went up to 41 percent during New Year’s.
Driving with a blood alcohol level of .08 or higher is illegal in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. This study has kicked of a $7 million nationwide public awareness campaign telling people about the crackdown on drunk drivers during the holiday season by local law enforcement agencies.
There is no question that the consequences of drunk driving are very serious and real. We’ve already seen so many DUI crashes in Orange and Los Angeles counties this holiday season that have involved deaths and catastrophic injuries. Holiday season or not – drunk driving is a bad idea. It is irresponsible, unethical and extremely dangerous. You could not only injure or kill yourself, but seriously harm the person riding with you or the person traveling in the vehicle you strike.
Drunk drivers also face criminal charges as they should. In addition they are liable for the injuries they cause to the people involved in the auto accident. This holiday season, do the responsible thing. Do not drink and drive. And have a wonderful holidays season. For more information about NHTSA’s report and a copy of the new statistical analysis, “Fatalities Related to Alcohol-Impaired Driving During the Christmas and New Year’s Day Holiday Periods,” visit this Web site .