Rates of DUIs spike during the holiday season
The holiday season is once again upon us. It is a time for families to gather together from near and far - drawn by good food and warm company. Between Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s, there are so many wonderful things to look forward to. However, with all the joy of the holidays, far too many people get behind the wheel after consuming too much alcohol.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the national death toll linked to drunk driving in 2016 amounted to 10,497 - that's 29 lives lost per day. Out of those killed in drunk driving accidents, 1,233 were children under the age of 14. And those staggering numbers account for 28 percent of all motor vehicle deaths for that year.
That's why Section 46.61.503 of Washington state law prohibits driving while under the influence of alcohol or any other controlled substance. A first offense can carry heavy consequences - including jail time, license suspension, and fines of up to $5,000. And if an accident is caused because of the negligence of a drunk driver, it can cost lives.
There are other options
With Thanksgiving to New Year's Day being a period of heavy alcohol consumption, it's no wonder December has been proclaimed National Impaired Driving Prevention Month. While consuming alcohol is inevitable during the coming weeks, you can take measures to save your own life and the lives of others. Even if you think you're OK to drive, the consequences always outweigh the risks.
We owe it to ourselves and our loved ones to hold each other responsible this holiday season. If you notice someone has been drinking too much and they pick up their keys, offer to drive them home, call them a cab instead or summon a rideshare. Make sure you and your loved ones have other options besides driving home, should you need them. It is better to travel home a day late than be involved in a car accident on your way home.
Don’t let one person’s decision to drive drunk ruin your holiday. If you or someone you know have been involved in a car accident as a result of someone driving under the influence, call Richard E. Lewis today. Our car accident lawyer will help you get a better start to 2018.