The extended Thanksgiving holiday is one of the most heavily traveled times of the year and most fatal for drunk driving crashes. Specifically, Thanksgiving Eve is known as one of the busiest nights for bars and restaurants and sometimes referred to as “Black Wednesday,” as it largely includes social binge drinking (consumption of a high volume of alcohol in a short period of time), drunk driving, and underage drinking.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), from 2013 to 2017, more than 800 people died in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday period, making it one of the most dangerous holidays on our roadways. For that reason, NHTSA and its partners are conducting a social media blitz featuring two hashtags #BoycottBlackoutWednesday and #DitchDanksgiving to help deliver lifesaving messages into the public conversation and encourage positive actions that can help reduce impaired driving.
Aligned with our support of Vision Zero, MCDOT aims to assist law enforcement and to educate the public on the dangers and consequences of impaired driving. MCDOT reminds residents that these high-risk activities, combined with the sheer number of drivers on the road, make it an especially dangerous holiday for alcohol-related collisions.
Wondering how you can avoid a perilous situation on Thanksgiving weekend? Follow these NHTSA tips if you’ve been drinking or see a possible drunk driver:
· Plan in advance and designate a sober driver before the first drink.
· Never let family or friends drive if they have had too much alcohol to drink.
· If you don't have a designated driver, contact a friend or family member, use public transportation, a taxi or ride share service like Uber or Lyft.
· Whether riding or driving, ALWAYS wear your seat belt.
· If you see a drunk driver on the road, contact local law enforcement. If you see a suspected drunk driver on the roadway this holiday season – or any time of the year – please call 9-1-1 to report the driver to authorities. It could save lives and help everyone enjoy a safe and happy holiday.