We’ve been talking recently about all of the dangers that accompany the holiday season. One of the most significant is drunk driving. Federal officials know that and they’re tackling it head on. Recently, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced the launch of its ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ holiday crackdown.
This year, officials with the NHTSA have teamed up with those from the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and both local and state law enforcement officials to help to get drunk drivers off of our roadways through the holidays. In 2011, there were close to 10,000 people killed in drunk driving car accidents. Close to 400 of them happened in just the last half of December.
Our Oakland Park injury attorneys understand that there were close to 2,500 people killed in car accidents in just the state of Florida in 2011. We were ranked as the third most dangerous for traffic accidents out of the entire year. Out of those fatalities, more than 715 of them were killed in drunk driving car accidents. That account for roughly 30 percent of all traffic fatalities. What might be the worst news of all is that those accidents were completely preventable. No one has to get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol.
“The holiday season can be an especially dangerous time on our nation’s roadways due to drunk drivers – that’s why law enforcement officers will be out in full force,” said Secretary Ray LaHood with the NHTSA.
Traffic safety officials throughout the country have one message for you, “Drive sober or get pulled over!”
In the recent release of drunk driving statistics, the number dropped in more than 26 states. Florida was not one of those fortunate states. Our number of drunk driving accident fatalities actually jumped up about 2 percent.
This year’s drunk driving campaign is funded by more than $5 million in federal funds. It consists of national radio and TV advertising messages. These ads push visible enforcement of officers looking for impaired drivers. Officials want drivers to know that officers are out there and they’re looking for them — not to be a bully, but to help to reduce the number of fatalities resulting from drunk driving accidents.
The NHTSA offers you these tips to help:
-Plan ahead. If you will be drinking, you should not be driving. Get a designated driver or find another safe and sober way to get home.
-If you have to find an alternative way to get home, consider calling a cab, a friend or a family member to come pick you up.
-Be responsible. If you know someone who has been drinking, don’t let them drive. If you spot a driver who you believe is under the influence of alcohol, call law enforcement. Your call could save someone’s life!
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