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Summer holidays bring heightened risk of DUI collisions

On Behalf of | Jun 7, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Summer often brings the promise of road trips, beach outings and holiday celebrations. Unfortunately, the summer months also bring a less welcome phenomenon—an increase in driving under the influence (DUI) collisions. What should drivers know about the risk of these collisions?

Summer DUI collisions by the numbers

Studies of drunk driving crashes are a stark reminder of the dangers lurking amidst the summer festivities. Statistics from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reveal that more drunk driving accidents occur in June, July and August than in other months.

Additionally, summer holidays rank among the top five holidays for DUI crashes. Drivers on the road on Independence Day face 77 percent higher risk of a collision with a drunk driver, and this weekend is the deadliest for such collisions. Labor Day and Memorial Day both see a more than 50 percent increase in risk of a drunk driving crash.

Why summer?

Several factors contribute to the spike in DUI rates during the summer:

  • More social gatherings – Summer is synonymous with gatherings like barbecues and beach parties, often involving alcohol. The relaxed atmosphere and longer days can lead to increased alcohol consumption without adequate plans for transportation.
  • Holiday celebrations – Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, and Labor Day are not only times for Americans to celebrate but are also peak times for alcohol consumption. These holidays create a perfect storm for DUI incidents as many indulge in celebrations without considering the repercussions of driving afterward.
  • Vacation time – In addition to holiday celebrations, summer is often a time for people to take time off to enjoy the warm weather. Unfortunately, that vacation time can also lead people to unwind with alcohol.

No matter the cause, the consequences of DUI collisions can be devastating. They can result in emotional distress, financial challenges and severe injuries. Injured people and their loved ones may need to pursue a personal injury lawsuit to get the support they need to recover.

Can you protect yourself?

Preparation can help you stay safe on the roadway. Here are some practical tips to ensure you and your loved ones remain safe on the roads during these festive times:

  • Plan ahead – If you plan to drink, decide in advance how you will get home safely. This may involve designating a sober driver if you are with a group, or it may involve using a ride-sharing service or taxi.
  • Know the signs – Be aware of the signs of intoxication in yourself and in others if you host a party. If someone tries to drive after drinking, take their keys and help them arrange a safe ride home.
  • Stay alert – Even if you are sober, others might not be. Keep an eye out for drivers who are swerving, speeding or braking erratically. Stay a safe distance from these drivers and report drunk drivers to the authorities if possible.

While you cannot entirely prevent accidents, knowing the risk of encountering a drunk driver and taking steps to protect yourself can help you stay safe during summer holidays.