It’s no secret that drinking and driving are a dangerous combination. Every holiday season, law enforcement officials remind drivers not to get behind the wheel if they’ve been drinking. But what holiday has the most drunk driving accidents? Surprisingly, it’s not New Year’s Eve or St. Patrick’s Day. Recent data shows that Memorial Day Weekend records the most incidents of drunk drivers involved in car accidents, some of which were fatal crashes. However, other holidays are also magnets for drunk driving.
If you were in an accident caused by a drunk driver, or if you yourself have been caught drunk driving, the best course of action is to consult with an experienced car accident lawyer from the Law Offices of Jared Spingarn. Jared can help you understand what your legal rights are and what options are available to you.
Drunk Driving Statistics in the USA
Based on the Fatality Analysis Reporting System of the Department of Transportation, there were 11,654 drunk driving deaths in 2020 alone. In each of these drunk driving fatal crashes, there was at least one alcohol-impaired driver involved. Additionally, the total number of fatal crashes involving drunk drivers accounted for 30% of all motor vehicle crashes in the same year.
Drunk Driving During the Holidays
According to the latest statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in 2020, Memorial Day weekend had the highest number of drunk driving crashes that year with 448 drunk drivers involved in accidents. Although, other holidays also come close and are listed as dangerous holidays by the NHTSA. The following are considered the deadliest holidays with many drunk drivers out on the road:
The summer holidays consist of Memorial Day, Independence Day, and Labor Day weekend. As mentioned, Memorial Day comes first on the list of alcohol-related traffic incidents, making it the deadliest holiday of 2020. Labor Day comes in at a close second. Labor Day is also one of the deadliest holidays, recording a total of 445 drunk driving accidents.
Another summer holiday that records a lot of drunk drivers is Independence Day. Independence Day is the third-deadliest holiday in terms of alcohol-related traffic incidents, with 440 drunk drivers involved in accidents in 2020.
Winter holidays are also known to be a time for more drunk driving incidents. The following winter holidays record a high number of drunk driver crashes: Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and Super Bowl Sunday.
Thanksgiving Day is also known to record a high number of drunk driver accidents. In 2020, there were 391 drunk drivers involved in fatal car crashes on this day, making it one of the most dangerous holidays for alcohol-related crashes. Thanksgiving has also led to what is now known as Blackout Wednesday. On this day, people engage in social binge drinking on the eve of Thanksgiving.
Aside from the Fourth of July, Labor Day, and other popular holidays for social drinking, there are also some days that unexpectedly contributed to the number of intoxicated drivers on the road. For instance, in 2020, Mother’s Day recorded 402 fatal crashes, while Father’s Day recorded 431.
Why are there more drunk drivers during the holiday periods?
There are a few reasons why there is an increase in drunk drivers during holiday periods, as listed below. If you are attending holiday parties, Labor Day Weekend BBQs, St. Patrick’s Day pub-hopping, and other traditional holiday celebrations, there is a high risk of drinking and getting behind the wheel. The good news is that you can avoid drunk drivers entirely by planning ahead of time, arranging for a designated driver, or taking public transportation if available.
Increase in Celebrations & Parties
During the holiday months, there is an increase in gatherings, events, and holidays that involve consuming alcohol and other substances. For instance, a holiday weekend during the summer is a time for people to celebrate what is often considered the end of summer. This can lead to excessive alcohol consumption and thus, an increase in drunk drivers on the roads. Similarly, a celebration on a July holiday such as Independence Day marks the middle of summer, and so people are likely to drink and drive, making them a potential risk on the roads.
High Stress & Anxiety Levels
Holidays are also a time for increased stress and anxiety. People may turn to holiday drinking as a means of coping with their emotions or to simply have fun. However, what they do not realize is that alcohol can affect their ability to drive safely and this may lead to an increase in the number of people driving under the influence during holiday periods.
Additionally, holidays may trigger stressors such as financial woes, family issues, and relationship problems, which may lead to people drinking more than what is considered safe. This also increases the chances of getting behind the wheel while impaired by alcohol or other substances.
Increased Alcohol Availability
Alcohol stores are often open longer hours during holiday periods. This may lead to increased access to alcohol, resulting in an increase in drunk drivers on the roads and alcohol-related crashes.
Lack of Awareness
Lastly, there is often a lack of awareness about what constitutes as drinking and driving or what the legal limits for blood-alcohol content are. People may not be aware of what the legal repercussions of driving under the influence (DUI) are, and thus, they do not take any precautions or avoid getting behind the wheel after drinking.
What should I do after an accident involving an alcohol-impaired driver?
If you have been involved in an accident involving a driver that is suspected to be under the influence, it is important that you take the necessary steps to protect yourself and stay safe.
Contact emergency services.
First of all, contact the local authorities and emergency services. You will need to receive treatment for your injuries, or at least get checked to ensure that you are unharmed. The local authorities are also needed so they can investigate what happened, as well as collect evidence from both parties involved in the collision. When filing a personal injury claim, you will need to present your medical records and the police report of the accident to be eligible for compensation.
Additionally, it is important that you collect evidence of what happened. Take pictures of the damage to both your vehicle and the other car involved in the accident, as well as any skid marks or debris left behind. You should also document where the crash took place, what time it occurred, what direction each vehicle was driving in, what weather conditions were present, and what other vehicles were nearby.
You can also speak to witnesses who may have seen what happened and collect their testimonies as well. Lastly, if the other driver was impaired, you should also take photos of any alcohol containers that were in their vehicle at the time of the crash.
Collecting evidence is an important step as it can provide valuable information that may be used to prove what happened and who was at fault. In case you are unable to do it yourself, your attorney may be able to help you with the process.
Refrain from speaking with an auto insurance adjuster.
It is important that you refrain from speaking with an auto insurance adjuster if you have been involved in an accident involving an alcohol-impaired driver. The insurance adjuster might pressure you into giving a statement or try to take advantage of your current situation and make suggestions that do not benefit you. Often, insurance adjusters will attempt to get you to sign documents that acknowledge what happened was an accident and not the fault of the alcohol-impaired driver.
Therefore, it is important that you do not sign any documents or provide a statement until you have consulted with your attorney. Your lawyer can help guide you through what needs to be done in order for you to receive compensation for your injuries, damage to property, and other related costs.
Call Jared Spingarn, Accident Attorney.
If you have been injured due to the negligence of another driver in an accident involving alcohol in Florida, then it is important that you contact a personal injury attorney from the law firm of Jared Spingarn, P.A. They can help you understand what your rights are and what type of compensation you may be eligible for. Your attorney will be able to gather evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and help you pursue a personal injury claim.
Getting in touch with an attorney will also help you protect yourself in the event that the other driver is convicted of a crime, such as vehicular homicide or DUI. The evidence collected by your attorney can help to support a case against the drunk driver and provide you with some form of closure after what has been an incredibly traumatic experience. However, in case you were the one charged with a DUI, an attorney can also provide you with legal help to defend yourself and support your case.
Ultimately, what holiday has the most drunk driving accidents? While Memorial Day may lead in terms of alcohol-impaired driver incidents, it is important to note that all holidays have the potential to be deadly if you get behind the wheel while impaired. Be sure to plan and designate a sober driver or use public transportation when attending celebrations during the so-called deadliest holidays. Doing so can help ensure that you and others stay safe on the roads.
Nevertheless, if you or a loved one were involved in an alcohol-related motor vehicle accident, contact an experienced attorney to learn more about your legal rights and options. If you are in Florida, get in touch with Jared Spingarn, P.A. Jared can help you get the compensation you are entitled to for any damages or injuries caused by the accident.
>> If you’re involved in a drunk driving accident in Florida, don’t hesitate to reach out to Jared Spingarn, Accident Attorney at 1-954-781-2316 for a Free Case Review or drop a message on their Contact Us page.