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Thanksgiving Eve: Staying Safe on the Most Dangerous Night of the Year

Nov 16th, 2022

For many years, New Year’s Eve and July 4th have effectively competed for the unwelcome title of “most dangerous driving day of the year.” However, recent statistics have shown there’s one night that’s even more dangerous for drunk driving: Thanksgiving Eve. (Or, as many are now calling it, “Blackout Wednesday” or “Drinksgiving.”) In fact, according to MADD, the entire Thanksgiving weekend led in drunk driving fatalities for four years running, making it the most dangerous holiday weekend of the year to be on the road.

Why has “Blackout Wednesday” become such a notorious night for drinking? For starters, people (including many college students) have just traveled home from work or school to be with family, and they feel a need to unwind and celebrate. To encourage them, there are more bar specials and promotions on this night than almost any other night of the year. And finally, people tend to let their guard down on this night because they’re surrounded by friends and family, and they don’t have to be anywhere for a few days. Whatever the reasons may be, Thanksgiving Eve is now one of the most important times of the year to be vigilant on the roadways. Here are some key tips for staying safe.

Plan Your Route in Advance

One of the best things you can do to stay safe on Blackout Wednesday is to plan your route in advance. That way, you’ll know exactly where you’re going and you won’t have to make any last-minute decisions that could put you in danger. Being unfamiliar with the roads creates an additional layer of possible distraction. If you’re not familiar with the area where you’ll be driving, be sure to study a map or use a GPS so you don’t get lost.

Steer Clear of the Bars

Drunk drivers may be anywhere, but common sense says they are most highly concentrated around bars and clubs. So for tonight, try to avoid neighborhoods with active nightlife and streets that are lined with drinking establishments. Doing so will at least lessen the risk of coming in contact with impaired drivers.

Avoid Driving Late at Night

The later it is in the evening on Blackout Wednesday, the more drunk drivers will be on the road—so it’s best to avoid being out late at night. If you must drive (or even walk) late at night, be extra cautious and watch out for other drivers who may not follow the rules of the road. Practice defensive driving, leave plenty of room between you and other cars, and anticipate the actions of other drivers.

Don’t Drive if You’re Drinking

Of course, one of the best ways to stay safe on Blackout Wednesday (or any other day) is to avoid drinking and driving. If you’re celebrating by drinking alcohol, make sure to have a designated driver or take a cab or Uber home. It’s not worth risking your life or the lives of others by getting behind the wheel when you’ve been drinking.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a drunk driving accident, our team of personal injury lawyers can work to ensure you receive full compensation for those injuries. To schedule a consultation, contact our offices today.