The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is once again teaming up with law enforcement across the United States during the 2019 Holiday Season to increase enforcement targeting the traffic safety issue of impaired driving. The enforcement campaigns, Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over and If You Feel Different, You Drive Different. Drive High, Get a DUI, run from December 13, 2019, through January 1, 2020 to coincide with the 2019 holiday season. The Holiday Season is one of the deadliest times of the year in terms of impaired-driving fatalities.
NHTSA reminds us, “It doesn’t matter what term you use: If a person is feeling a little high, buzzed, stoned, wasted, or drunk, he or she is impaired and should never get behind the wheel.”
Summer is drawing to a close. For many families the Labor Day weekend is a time for one last road trip before getting back into the school year groove. More people on the roads means greater potential for something to go wrong. While you enjoy your holiday please be vigilant behind the wheel and remember to:
- Stay alert and drive defensively
- Wear your seat belt
- Drive sober
- Avoid drowsy driving
- Avoid driving distractions
July 4th is a celebration of American independence and freedom. Don’t jeopardize your freedom by drinking and driving. Law enforcement across the US are taking part in the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign during the 4th of July holiday period, June 29 through July 5, 2019, to put an end to drunk driving.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that over the 4th of July holiday period in 2017 (6 p.m. June 30 to 5:59 a.m. July 5), 601 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes. 39% (237) of those fatalities occurred in alcohol-impaired crashes. This is a 23% increase from 2016, during which 192 people were killed during the same holiday period. NHTSA urges drivers to designate a sober driver before heading out for the evening. If you plan on drinking, plan on not driving.
An interesting report from GasBuddy found that Americans tend to drive 175% more aggressively during the holidays. GasBuddy looked at the number of instances quick accelerating, hard braking, and speeding occurred during the Thanksgiving holiday (November 21 – 25, 2018). The results showed that these aggressive driving events happened most often on the day leading up to the holiday. Aggressive driving is not only dangerous, it is also hard on your gas consumption. This is something to keep in mind with upcoming holiday travels. Some tips for your holiday trips: Plan ahead so you have plenty of time to reach your destination. Take a deep breath, relax, and drive with courtesy. Our goal should be for us all to get where we are going safely. Drive safe and have a happy holiday season!
The holiday season means holiday shopping for many. The Turlock PD shared a video with three simple tips to help avoid your parked vehicle being the target of a break in.
- Lock your doors.
- Roll your windows all the way up.
- Don’t leave your personal belongings in plain sight.
St. Patrick’s Day 2018
St. Patrick’s Day for many means drinking lots of green beer. In fact, March 17th is ranked the 4th most popular drinking day behind New Year’s Eve, Christmas, and the 4th of July, according to WalletHub. So, while you are preparing for a fun night out, take a look at these sobering statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and as always, please remember that drinking and driving don’t mix.
- St. Patrick’s Day is one of the deadliest holidays on our nation’s roads. During the 2012-2016 St. Patrick’s Day holiday period (6 p.m. March 16 to 5:59 a.m. March 18), 269 lives were lost due in drunk-driving crashes.
- In 2016 alone, 60 people (39% of all crash fatalities) were killed in drunk-driving crashes over the St. Patrick’s Day holiday period.
- Between midnight and 5:59 a.m. March 18, 2016, almost three-fourths (69%) of crash fatalities involved a drunk driver.
- Walking home from the bar after a night out partying? That can also be dangerous. In 2016, 36% of the pedestrians killed in crashes had blood alcohol concentrations (BAC) of .08 or higher.
Please make arrangements in advance to get home safely. Have a designated driver in your group, plan to use public transportation, or utilize Uber or Lyft. Bottom line, be sure you have a sober ride lined up before you take your first sip.
Another year is coming to a close and we at TrafficSchool.com would like to thank you for your business and pass on a wish for you in the New Year. We hope the upcoming year will be happy and healthy for you and yours. Wishing you all the best in 2018 and please remember to drive yourself and those you love safely.
Quick Tips for Holiday Travels
AAA estimates there will be 48.7 million travelers this Thanksgiving holiday weekend starting today, November 23, 2016 through Sunday, November 27, 2016. For those of you traveling on highways and byways, here are a few helpful safety reminders.
Before you leave:
- Check your tires are properly inflated and that your tire tread is healthy (no bald spots).
- Be sure to pack an emergency kit: a flashlight, blankets, jumper cables, a first aid kit, drinking water, non-perishable snacks, and a cell phone.
- Buckle up. Make sure you and all your passengers are properly secured in an approved and appropriate seat belt and/or child passenger restraint system.
On the road:
- Obey the posted limit signs. Speed limits are set for your safety. Also, you’ll save a little money with better gas mileage.
- Avoid unnecessary lane changes. Remember, frequently changing lanes to pass other vehicles increases your risk of having a collision. If you do pass, remember to pass on the left and look for the other vehicle’s headlights in your rearview mirror before you return to your lane. For large trucks you want to see the cab of the truck in your rearview mirror before going back into the lane.
- No drinking and driving. If you have been drinking alcohol, don’t drive. If you plan on drinking, set up a designated driver before you start.
Have a Happy and Safe Holiday Season!
Beware Intoxicated Drivers
The holiday season is right around the corner bringing many merry festivities with it. Unfortunately this usually means an increase in drunken drivers on the road. If you notice an impaired driver sharing the road with you, what should you do?
- Maintain a safe following distance.
- Do NOT try to pass or overtake a potentially intoxicated driver.
- If the car is behind you, try to turn onto another road.
- When safe, pull over and contact the police. Give them as much information as you can in regards to license plate number, vehicle description, location and behavior of the driver.
Most importantly, let the police handle the driver. Do not try to personally stop or detain the vehicle. Stay safe and have a great holiday season!
How Drivers Can Prepare
All motorists need to be EXTRA alert today. Halloween ranks the highest for the amount of child pedestrian deaths and reports some of the highest holiday- related DUIs and pedestrian deaths overall. National Safety Council and Trafficschool.com have some quick safety tips for motorists:
Keep an eye out for children who may be darting out from between parked cars and walking on roadways, medians and curbs. Children can move in unpredictable ways, especially when you add in the excitement of trick-or-treating and overflowing amounts of candy. Sometimes they are wearing dark clothing or costumes that make them even more difficult to spot later in the evening when it’s darker outside, so drive cautiously. Always enter and exit driveways and alleys with extra care, and never use your cell phone when you are operating a vehicle. It’s also a good idea for teens simply not to drive on Halloween night, because there are too many hazards and distractions for inexperienced drivers. And if you are going to be consuming alcohol, make sure you have a designated driver before you even go out. Jot down a cab company’s phone number too, and bring it with you, just in case.
Being prepared and informed will help ensure your Halloween is full of fun and not regrets. So take note, and be sure to remind all your friends and family on how they can have a safe and happy Halloween!