Studies show that more than 10,000 people are killed in drunk driving-related accidents every year on America’s roadways. The risk of being involved in a drunk driving accident increases during the holiday season, due to the uptick in social binge drinking. Below is a list of holiday drunk driving trends as well as data revealing which holiday periods are the most dangerous. And, while virtually all drunk driving deaths are preventable, fatalities during the holiday season are predictable.
Fatal Crash Statistics
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) compiles the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS), which contains data on a census of fatal traffic accidents across the country and became operational in 1975. According to the NHTSA, FARS is a nationwide census that provides NHTSA, Congress, and the American public annual data regarding fatal injuries suffered in traffic accidents.
The research revealed that the most popular way to travel during the holidays is driving, and it is also the most dangerous due to drunk driving. In fact, 40% of highway deaths during the winter holidays are alcohol related, although summer holidays also see an uptick in both DUIs and fatalities. While larger and more populated states have more alcohol-related traffic fatalities, smaller states have more incidents per capita when adjusted for population. Other trends that were revealed show that:
- The deadliest holiday for alcohol-related accidents in 2019 was Memorial Day while the highest percentage of alcohol-related deaths occurs on New Year’s Eve;
- Montana is the deadliest state, per capita, for holiday alcohol-related crashes followed by New Mexico and Wyoming;
- In 2019, 40% of deadly car accidents during Memorial Day weekend involved a drunk driver with Wyoming having the most per capita fatalities, followed by Vermont and Louisiana;
- Eight hundred and twelve people were killed in alcohol-related car accidents from 2014 to 2018 during the Fourth of July holiday with D.C. having the highest per capita deaths in 2019, followed by South Dakota and Delaware;
- In 2019, one-hundred-forty-two people lost their lives in alcohol-related crashes during the Labor Day holiday, with Montana having the highest per capita death rate followed by Wyoming and North Dakota;
- Sixteen percent of adults drink more during the Christmas holiday, and 140 people were killed in 2019 on Christmas day as a result of alcohol-related traffic accidents with New Mexico having the highest per capita fatality rate, followed by Louisiana and Alaska;
- Thanksgiving is the most traveled holiday, with the night before being one of the busiest for bars in the nation;
- The New Year holiday is the riskiest time of year for alcohol-related car accidents–including fatal crashes and pedestrian accidents.
The above statistics make one thing clear — driving during the holidays poses an increased risk because of the higher percentage of people who have consumed alcohol prior to getting behind the wheel.
Nevada Accident Lawyers
For years, the attorneys at H&P Law have been helping accident victims in Las Vegas and across Nevada fight for their right to compensation after being involved in a car accident with a drunk driver. Contact H&P Law today for an initial consultation on your case.