January 2017 - Richard P. Davies Law
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Alcohol, Teens, Holidays and Driving: Playing it Safe Behind the Wheel

Alcohol, Teens, Holidays and Driving: Playing it Safe Behind the Wheel

Most of us think about driving conditions as factors influenced by traffic, weather and roadway quality or complexity. Ample data clearly prove however, that we ought to expand our definition of driving conditions to include drivers around us, their level of sobriety and distraction, and our own state of mind and sobriety. Increases in vehicular accidents obviously correspond to increased driver intoxication. Traffic and inclement weather undeniably contribute to accidents and motor vehicle fatalities, but year after year, we see that accidents and fatalities cluster around holidays, when alcohol and drug consumption increase. Cinco de Mayo, the Super Bowl and St. Patrick’s Day claim disproportionate number of lives as well. Summers and Holidays – Contributing to More Accidents and Arrests National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data show that between 2001 and 2005, an average of 36 fatalities occurred per day in the United States owing to alcohol-related accidents. During summers and holidays however those numbers rose dramatically. The weeks leading up to and directly after Christmas saw an average of 45 fatalities from alcohol-related accidents each day, and soared to 54 per day over the New Year’s holiday. While the lazy days of summer season offer the best weather and driving conditions of the year, the presumed safety is sadly eroded by alcohol-impaired drivers. According to the NHTSA, the summer months see nearly twice the number of automotive deaths than during the rest of the year combined.  The period between Memorial Day and Labor Day has been called the ‘100 Deadliest Days’ for teen drivers. Nine of the ten deadliest days for teens fall between May and August...