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Thanksgiving Weekend and DWIs

As Thanksgiving approaches, people will be excited to pull out their choice wines and enjoy a lavish meal along with some delicious alcohol. Unfortunately, the presence of alcohol at Thanksgiving celebrations leads to a greater amount of DWIs. According to the Dallas News, the state of Texas is creating a DWI task force which will tackle this problem out on the roads by adding extra patrols and being vigilant to catch intoxicated drivers. Last December, the Dallas County Commissioner said that the county would be revitalizing their DWI task force. The program has been preventing drunk driving for years, but has been less active recently. The commissioner said that she wants to employ this valuable resource once again. She has also recruited police forces and organizations to pitch in and help the task force. She hopes that the extra patrols may help to lessen the amount of drivers and arrests this holiday weekend.

According to DUI Life Tips, Thanksgiving is the holiday with the largest amount of drunk driving fatalities every year. This is contrary to popular belief, as most people think that New Years’ Eve is the number one DUI night of the year. Yet people tend to let their guard down when they are surrounded by family, and drinking can become a central activity at family gatherings like Thanksgiving dinner. Because cars are often full with entire families on Thanksgiving, a drunk driver may cause a multiplicity of deaths if driving under the influence. People should think twice before consuming wine with their turkey dinner or swallowing a few beers while watching the sports games on TV. Leave the alcohol for another day when you are at your own home and do not need to transport family to and from a Thanksgiving gathering. The National Center for Statistics and Analysis says that young party-goers between 21 and 24 are the most common culprits when it comes to alcohol-impaired driving.

According to Addiction, the span of time between Thanksgiving and New Years’ Day is the number one most popular time to locate drunk drivers out on the road. This is because of the abundance of holiday parties complete with alcoholic beverages during this time. Police warn that while you should enjoy your parties, it is essential to drive responsibly. Forbes claims that almost half of all fatalities on Thanksgiving Day involve alcohol. Last year, 502 people were killed on Thanksgiving Day when they were driving home from a feast that undoubtedly included wine, beer, or a cocktail. The AAA says that more than 50% more drivers on the road have a higher-than-usual BAC because they have been drinking on that day.

While not all drivers may have an illegal BAC, this does not change the fact that they may not be in a position to safely drive a vehicle. On typical day, about 102 people die in alcohol-related car accidents in the United States of America. When Thanksgiving brought on 502 car accident fatalities, people were shocked to think that this is almost 5 times the daily average. In addition to the fact that more people are inhibited by alcohol on Thanksgiving, there are more cars on the road. An AAA representative says that more vehicles create a greater potential for danger. The Research and Innovative Technology Administration says that about 91 percent of all Americans will travel by car to reach their destination this Thanksgiving.

During Thanksgiving, the number of Americans that are on road trips increases by 54%. The number of trips increases by 23% during Christmas and New Year’s Day. RITA says that the average Thanksgiving road trip is about 214 miles, and the average Christmas or New Year’s trip is 275 miles. In many cases, Christmas and New Year’s travel rates are contingent on what day the holiday falls on. If Christmas is on a weekend, then chances are that the travel rates will increase. Because Thanksgiving is always on a Thursday, the Department of Transportation says that they can rely on an abundance of travel that weekend.

Despite the tragic amount of alcohol-related deaths surrounding Thanksgiving last year, the Department of Transportation says that the statistics dropped from previous Thanksgivings. The national average for traffic-related deaths is 556. Last year, the Department of Transportation observed that high gas prices may have discouraged some families from travelling for the holidays. This year, with lower gas prices as encouragement, the Department of Transportation expects that there will be more fatalities than last year brought. Even non-fatal crashes will take their toll in America this year. The National Highway Traffic Safety Association says that motor vehicle crashes cost American taxpayers more than $100 billion each year. An Insurance Institute for Highway Safety insider claims that about $36 billion is paid out annually in insurance claims.

All of this to say, police will be vigilant in looking for intoxicated drivers this holiday weekend. If you choose to drink and drive, then you may end up under arrest, and will spend a very un-festive holiday in the county jail. If this happens to you, then you are going to need the help of an accomplished Houston DWI attorney such as Christian C. Samuelson from The Samuelson Law Firm. Mr. Samuelson is dedicated to defending the DWI suspects of Houston in any case that they are facing. Check out the firm on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ if you want more information!

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