Statistics show that the Thanksgiving holiday is the most deadly four-day holiday period on American roads. Between 1998 and 2008, there was an average of 572 deaths annually on U.S. highways during the long Thanksgiving weekend, and while many of these deaths are the result of excess traffic congestion and increased travel, DUI accounted for a full 36 percent of these deaths. Numbers like these are absolutely tragic.
Thanksgiving is one of the biggest drinking nights of the year. Alcohol is as much a part of the Thanksgiving tradition as turkey and stuffing. And while there's nothing wrong with alcohol in itself, drinking and driving remains a major epidemic. Here are some important things to take into consideration this Thanksgiving holiday:
1) Washington State is just one of many states cracking down on DUI this holiday season. Here in Washington, law enforcement has unveiled the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign,” which places extra police on the roads to find and arrest impaired drivers. This is just another practical reason why you shouldn't get behind the wheel if you have been drinking.
2) Even if you don't plan to drink, remember to be extra cautious when navigating the roads. Since we've already established that Thanksgiving is one of the year's heaviest drinking days, you must be diligent to protect yourself against the unpredictable actions of impaired drivers.
3) DUI laws vary from state to state, but if you're charged, you can face some very serious penalties. Here in Washington State, we have some of the nation's strictest DUI penalties, which include mandatory jail time, ignition interlock, alcohol/drug evaluation license suspension, thousands in fines and more. Even for a first time DUI conviction.
4) You don't need to be a teetotaler to have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving. Just know your limits, don't get behind the wheel while you're under the influence, and make plans for a safe ride home if necessary. You have many options, like assigning a designated driver, using public transportation or calling a cab.
Thanksgiving is one of our most cherished holidays, and a time for celebration. A DUI charge can ruin all of that, so be safe, use common sense and have a wonderful holiday. A clean record and a safe journey are things that you can definitely be thankful for.
If you have been charged with DUI, you have rights. Contact the King County DUI lawyers at Wolff Criminal Defense, to receive a free and confidential consultation. Don't fight the battle alone. Call us at 425-284-2000.