Not surprisingly, the odds of getting into an auto accident increase when there are more cars on the road (such as during rush hour) or when driving conditions are less than optimal (say, during rain storms). But when the number of alcohol impaired drivers increases, the odds of a drunk driving related accident skyrocket.
Alcohol consumption and holiday driving
According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), at certain times of the year, such as summers and holidays, the numbers of deaths caused by drunk drivers increases dramatically. During the Christmas season, for example, an average of 45 fatalities involving an alcohol-impaired driver occurred each day, and soared to 54 per day over New Year’s.
As mentioned above, more cars on the road generally means more accidents. And during the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day, the number of road trips increases by 23%. Not only are more people driving during holidays, but, for Christmas at least, they’re driving longer as well. While the average Thanksgiving road trip is 214 miles, the average Christmas or New Year’s trip 275 miles. This desire to see family that is not necessarily close by can lead to unexpected tragedy or loss. If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident caused by a negligent driver, contact an experienced accident attorney about your legal rights and potential for financial recovery.
Alcohol and our roads
Driving fatality rates are always higher during holiday periods than non-holiday times and alcohol consumption is believed to be the main culprit. Young partygoers are particularly at risk: the NHTSA says drivers aged 21 to 24 have the highest level of involvement in alcohol-impaired driving.
New Year’s Eve and car accidents
Pedestrians and motorcyclists are also at risk for being hit by a drunk driver during the holidays, particularly around New Year’s Eve. According to a recent NHTSA study, 38% of the traffic fatalities during the Christmas period involved a Drunk Driver and 41% during the New Year’s period. The New Year is intended to be a time of joyous new beginnings, not tragedy caused by negligent or reckless drivers.
For more information on what to do after you or a loved one was injured in a drunk driving accident that was not your fault, contact accident attorney Barry P. Goldberg today for a free, no obligation consultation.