Increased traffic is inevitable in the coming days and weeks. While the holidays are meant to be joyful, the dangers of the road never seem to cease. One of the biggest threats is what safety officials now call Blackout Wednesday. “Thanksgiving Eve” has been marked as a day that hosts one of the highest levels of alcohol consumption throughout the year.
According to AAA, traffic deaths near Thanksgiving weekend, which includes Blackout Wednesday and Black Friday, see more than 400 traffic deaths each year. As we have mentioned, there are an estimated 48.7 million people traveling this year to celebrate Turkey Day with family across the country. Additionally, projections made by AAA have estimated that an additional 800,000 more people will be traveling by car than last Thanksgiving.
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What is more frightening is the fact that Blackout Wednesday has become the most deadly holiday for alcohol-impaired driving – even surpassing New Year’s Eve. With an estimated 52.8 million cases of beer being sold this Thanksgiving, the amount of alcohol sold surrounding the Thanksgiving holiday even beats St. Patrick’s Day. Additionally, the number of college students who travel home for Thanksgiving to visit family and reconnect with high school friends leads to an increase in the amount of patrons visiting bars and restaurants. The excitement of seeing old friends seems to cloud judgment and overindulgence leads to more DUI’s and fatal accidents.
The holidays are meant to enjoy family and friends and reflect on all of the reasons for which we are thankful. Although it may be a time for celebration, the importance of safety should remain close to heart. The rise of travelers and inebriated individuals on our roads and highways is a recipe for disaster that must be stopped. Enjoy, celebrate, and give thanks, but also be responsible – don’t drink and drive.
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