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The holidays: A dangerous time to drive

Statistics show that the holiday season is among the very most dangerous times of the year to drive or to travel by car. In Illinois and nationwide, the stretch of time from Thanksgiving through the start of the New Year is marked not only by festivities, but also by the number of accidents due to intoxicated motorists. All too many will lose their lives in a fatal car accident.

Last year in Illinois, nine people were killed in highways accidents during the Thanksgiving holiday period alone, with a third of those deaths clearly the result of drinking and driving. If you are going to be drinking, a good idea is to have a designated driver who does not drink or at least restricts their consumption. It is also a good idea to discourage people from driving when it is clear that they have had too much to drink and either offer them a ride home or call them a cab.

The holidays are also a time when law enforcement understandably steps up patrols looking for drunk drivers, making more arrests and issuing more citations in an attempt to improve traffic safety and to decrease the mayhem on the highways. All too often, unfortunately, the number of intoxicated drivers is too numerous for all of them to be stopped, and other motorists, passengers, pedestrians and bike riders all wind up paying the price for such recklessness.

Personal injury lawsuits and wrongful death claims can attempt to get some small measure of compensation from drunk drivers for accident victims and their families, as well as attempting to deter others from driving after drinking.

Public News Service, “Holiday Travel Season Can Mean Danger on Illinois Roads” No author given, Nov. 25, 2013