Last updated on May 16, 2017 at 02:40 pm
As the traditional end of summer approaches, police in New Jersey and in states across the country are cracking down on drunken driving as part of the annual “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” initiative, which runs from Aug. 21 through Sept. 7.
Traffic volumes during the Labor Day weekend typically swell as people travel for cookouts, beach time and other last warm-weather hurrahs before temperatures begin to cool. That also means that instances of drunken driving will also increase, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
It’s illegal in every state to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher, and there are serious consequences to a drunken driving conviction, including fines and jail time, which don’t factor in the danger of actually driving drunk. Consider these statistics from the NHTSA:
- One person is killed in a drunk-driving crash every 52 minutes in the United States.
- Of the 10,076 people killed in drunk-driving crashes in 2013, 65% were the drunk drivers themselves.
- Approximately one-third of all traffic crash fatalities in the United States involve drunk drivers.
- In 2013, approximately 1 in 5 child (12 and younger) passenger deaths were in drunk-driving crashes — 71% of the time, it was the child’s own driver who was drunk.
- On Labor Day weekend in 2013, there were 424 crash fatalities nationwide. Almost half (48%) of those fatal crashes involved drivers who had been drinking, while 38% involved drivers who were drunk.
There are alternatives to driving after drinking. If you’re a Plymouth Rock Assurance policyholder, we’ll reimburse you for a Taxi ride through our Get Home Safe® program if you had a little too much to drink or are too drowsy to drive.
The New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety has other suggestions for safer alternatives to driving after drinking:
- Don’t risk it. If you plan to drive, don’t drink.
- Choose a sober designated driver before partying.
- Take mass transit, a taxicab or ask a friend to drive you home if you didn’t plan in advance.
Make smart choices every time you plan to drink while you’re away from home. Help everyone Get Home Safe.