Drunk drivers may be on the road at any time of the year. However, the winter holiday season is a very dangerous time for travelers. The number of social gatherings at which alcohol is commonly served tends to increase as family and friends get together to celebrate. This raises the risk for innocent people to be injured or even killed at the hands of drunk drivers.
According to records from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, North Carolina experienced a jump in the number of people killed at the hands of drunk drivers last year. In 2018, the state recorded 421 drunk driving deaths, an increase of over 20 deaths from 2017. Instead of going down, the number of drunk driving deaths appears to be going up. Here is a breakdown by nearby counties:
- In New Hanover County, drunk drivers were responsible for 29 deaths between 2014 and 2018, representing 32% of the county’s total vehicular fatalities over those five years.
- In Brunswick County, 30 people died in impaired accidents over that same time, accounting for 36% of that county’s accident deaths.
- Pender County recorded 27 deaths, amounting to 28% of its overall traffic fatalities.
If you or someone you loves is traveling during the holidays, pay special attention to friends and family members, and don’t let them drive after drinking. Even one drink can cause impaired driving for those who have alcohol sensitivities, don’t weigh much or have not eaten much prior to drinking.