When it comes to fatal motor vehicle accidents, which holiday is the most dangerous? The list changes slightly from year-to-year, but Labor Day annually is at or near the top in terms of the number of people killed in car and truck accidents.
The National Safety Council recently estimated that nearly 400 people will die in car crashesduring the 2014 Labor Day holiday weekend, beginning 6 p.m. Friday, August 29 and ending at
11:59 p.m. Monday, September 1. Another 42,300 will be injured, according to the organization.
One of the reasons why Labor Day or any holiday poses increased deadly driving dangers is alcohol. More people consume alcohol and then drink and drive on these special occasions than on any other days.
To help curtail the fatal consequences of drinking and driving, the Missouri State Highway Patrol began its 2014 “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign August 15, which ran through the Labor Day holiday weekend. According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, one person this Labor Day weekend will die every 34 minutes across the country in car crashes involving drunk drivers. In a similar 2013 crackdown, Missouri police officers made 587 DWI arrests.
Missouri’s neighboring state is paying special attention to this Labor Day holiday weekend as well, with good reason. According to the most recent set of statistics, 47 percent – or just about half – of all Illinois deaths from motor vehicle accidents involve alcohol. Missouri reports that 30 percent of its traffic accident fatalities involve a substance-impaired driver.
Missouri officials offer the following common-sense tips to limit the number of dangerous drunk drivers on the roads during Labor Day weekend and other holidays:
- Always use a designated driver
- If you don’t have a designated driver, use a taxi or mass transit to take you home
- Those throwing parties should offer alcohol-free beverages to designated drivers
- Always wear your seatbelt, and make sure your passengers do too
That last item is protection for sober drivers from those who are impaired. Unfortunately, the tragedy of drinking and driving often touches the innocent, bringing heartbreak in a matter of seconds.
If you had a loved one killed in a motor vehicle accident involving a drunk driver, you may want to speak with an attorney who can pursue compensation for your devastating loss.