Ready or not, the holiday season is about to kick off. You may soon be spending time with family and friends while eating turkey and all the fixings. However, turkey may not be the only thing that gets gobbled up this time of year. During the five-day holiday period around Thanksgiving in 2017, Pennsylvania police responded to 981 crashes and made 629 arrests for DUI. You can expect them to try and gobble up many more this year.
The numbers listed above are both an increase from the previous year’s totals. In 2016, there was 5 percent less crashes and 19 fewer DUI arrests. Unfortunately, one of the crashes that troopers responded to in 2017 resulted in a fatality.
A dangerous holiday
Thanksgiving has historically been one of the most dangerous times of the year to be out on the road. Besides the increased number of vehicles traveling to their holiday destinations, many of the drivers may have used intoxicating substances as part of their celebrations. The Wednesday evening prior to Thanksgiving has been giving the name “Black Wednesday,” since it has become one of the busiest nights of the year for bars and restaurants.
DUI drivers and the dangers of the road do not end with Thanksgiving. There is a reason many people refer to this time of year as the Holidays. From Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, the risk of crashes and deaths related to DUI drivers is greatly increased. Once the element of inclement weather like snow or sleet is added in, the risk can be even greater.
Football and DUI
The holiday season is not only a dangerous time to be out on the roads, you can add football season too. Both professional and college teams are in critical parts of their seasons during Thanksgiving and many people will watch the games while drinking. This year, the Nittany Lions have a home game prior to Thanksgiving and then have a road game against Maryland the Saturday following Thanksgiving. You can expect many people travelling to and from the game causing conditions on the road to require extra attention.
Regardless of what season we are in, holiday or football, you should always make a concerted effort to stay safe while out on the roads. Since DUI arrests and crashes have increased the last couple of year’s during Thanksgiving, you can be assured Pennsylvania State Troopers will be watching.