The Christmas season is a time for family and friends to come together in celebration of the holiday and of the bonds they share. It’s also a very special time for young children, who celebrate the Christmas season with unbridled enthusiasm.
Alcohol consumption is central to the Christmas and New Year’s celebrations of many people. Fortunately most choose to drink responsibly, including planning ahead to prevent driving while under the influence. However, drunk driving still increases dramatically during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, as do DUI accidents and fatalities.
So why does drunk driving increase this time of the year, and how can you protect your family?
Many Christmas and New Year’s events include alcohol, and social binge drinking is often encouraged. Office holiday parties often involve the consumption of alcoholic beverages. Most of us have heard stories of employees who overindulge at the company Christmas party and make questionable decisions that become hot topics for office gossip.
Unfortunately, some attendees may also make the very poor decision to drive home while impaired, risking a DUI and potentially bringing great harm to other drivers on the road.
Family and Friend Get-togethers
The holidays are a time for families and friends to eat, drink, and be merry. Partially because of this, many family and friend get-togethers include social drinking, and some guests may drink more than originally intended. If guests don’t have a plan in place prior to the event, they’re much more likely to drive home drunk.
If you are hosting a get-together and plan to serve alcohol, you can take some precautions to keep your guests from driving home drunk. Limit the number of alcoholic beverages you serve guests if possible, and switch to non-alcoholic beverages an hour or so before the event ends. Also be sure to serve plenty of snacks, and keep an eye on any guests that become impaired to ensure that they don’t attempt to drive home.
The holidays can be enjoyable, but are also a stressful time for many Americans. The hustle and bustle of the holidays can be exhausting, and holiday event planning is often overwhelming. Further, family get-togethers can bring up old conflicts, and may therefore be tense events for some families.
All of these factors make individuals more likely to turn to alcohol as a way to de-stress. Stress can also make destructive decisions such as drunk driving more likely.
Recovering Alcoholics and Addicts
For recovering alcoholics and addicts, relapse is more common around the holidays. Increased alcohol consumption by everyone around them may tempt alcoholics to drink. Further, the holidays bring strained family relationships to the forefront, causing those in recovery to turn to their addiction.
This is doubly unfortunate because alcoholics and addicts are more likely than other individuals to engage in high-risk behaviors such as driving while impaired, increasing the risk of DUI accidents.
New Year’s Eve
Tradition holds that New Year’s Eve is one of the year’s biggest drinking holidays. Although some celebrators drink responsibly, others may choose to drive while impaired, causing a dramatic increase in DUI accidents and fatalities on New Year’s Eve.
To decrease the risk of a DUI accident, make travel plans to avoid being on the road late at night, when drunk driving is more common. When you’re on the road, remain alert and be aware of signs of drunk driving such as swerving, wide turns and inappropriate speed. Avoid these cars, and report them to the Highway Patrol to help keep other motorists safe.
Your family could be facing high medical bills, lost wages, and potentially life-altering injuries – or even the loss of a loved one. This is traumatic for the entire family, and may also make your family’s financial future uncertain.
Seeking damages can help address financial concerns, and provide closure on this traumatic event. Just as importantly, it allows you to hold the drunk driver accountable for his or her actions and hopefully prevent them from doing something like this to others.
About the Author:
Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for the South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.
July 4th tends to evoke backyard barbecues, poolside cocktails, and fireworks at dusk. We usually think of spending this holiday with family, and staying close to home. On the contrary, AAA pegs the fourth as one of their busiest days. Did you know the average distance traveled on July 4th is 617 miles? What’s more, [..]
When most of us think about Fourth of July safety, we think about fireworks. Although improper use of fireworks can cause serious injuries, there’s a less obvious risk: food poisoning. Most Fourth of July celebrations involve outdoor gatherings, with perishable food that’s often brought in by a number of people, some of whom may not [..]
Summer is upon us, and it’s peak swimming pool season in the sunshine state. Although swimming is a great way to cool off and get some exercise, it can also be dangerous. Statistics show three children die every day from swimming pool accidents, and many more people sustain serious injuries. In many cases, these tragic [..]
Memorial Day offers a time to celebrate loved ones lost. It also signals the beginning of another Florida summer which often means road trip! In either case, we all find a reason and a way to cut loose. Unfortunately, these celebrations also lead to an uptick in car accidents. The primary causes? More cars on [..]
Johnson & Johnson has been a trusted name in cosmetics and household products for decades. However, in recent years, they have come under fire for lawsuits that suggest their talcum powder products caused cancer. The company isn’t just paying with a blow to their reputation, either. Earlier this year, a woman in California won $29 [..]
Every summer, Floridians look forward to that much needed break that summer camp provides: the kids to get away from the daily grind of the school year, and you to get a little breathing room from them. Exactly how much of a break would it be, though, if you’re still holding your breath in anticipation [..]
Temperatures are rising and a lot of long weekends are just around the corner. Whether you’re planning to hop in your boat for Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, or other summer holidays, it’s important to stay safe this season. Boating accidents do happen here in Florida, and many can be fatal. In 2017, 658 [..]
In the height of prom season, across the country, local police and first responders work with surrounding schools, survivors, and other drunk driving prevention organizations to reenact realistic reminders of why teens in their communities shouldn’t drink and drive. One survivor in Illinois recounted his experience of being ejected through a car window after plowing [..]
Cycling is not only a convenient and healthy way to get around in Florida, but it’s widely accepted as an effective means of reducing congestion on the road and improving the quality of our environment. However, the relationship between drivers and cyclists in Florida has always been tinged with antagonism. Motorists often complain that cyclists [..]
We live in an animal-loving society. Most of us interact with pets on a daily basis (ours or others), and they are an important part of many people’s lives. However, it is vital to remember that all animals are, at their core, wild, and sometimes things go wrong. What happens when an animal bites someone? [..]
Bars and advertisements for alcoholic products often encourage people to “drink responsibly,” but in some cases, the establishments or bartenders serving these drinks may be at least partially liable for a patron’s alcohol-related injury or death. Under certain circumstances, bars can—and should—be held responsible for over-serving patrons. Many states have “dram shop” laws (named [..]
Summertime is quickly approaching, which means barbecues, family vacations, and a lot of days sitting by the pool. While you and your loved ones enjoy the hot summer weather and cool water, it is important to keep yourself safe. In this post we will be focusing on swimming pool injuries and how to prevent them. [..]
The death of a loved one is traumatic and devastating experience— regardless of the cause. However, the ordeal can be especially upsetting if the death could have been avoided had it not been for the negligent actions of another. In Florida, surviving family members and loved ones may be able to recover compensation for [..]
Right now, all Florida drivers are required to have car insurance coverage that pays personal injury protection (PIP) benefits, but that may come to an end in 2019 if some lawmakers get their way. Florida currently operates under a “no-fault” system when it comes to paying insurance claims after a car accident. If a [..]
Florida’s summer is well underway, and the hot weather is a perfect excuse to get out on the water. With close to 900,000 registered vessels in the state, chances are that you or someone you know owns a boat and is planning to use it this season. Getting out on a lake or the ocean [..]
When you become a parent, every little decision regarding your child’s safety and development can become a hot debate. We’re not going to tell you how to raise your child, but we do have one piece of advice backed up with statistics from the AAP and NHTSA. When you are driving with your child, [..]
It’s not every day that you get into an accident and need to file a personal injury protection (PIP) suit. This type of litigation may be confusing to many, especially since PIP laws are constantly being debated and changed in Florida. However, it is possible for you to get through this process and receive [..]
What are your chances of getting hit by someone driving a rental car in Florida? Every year, the state of Florida has 15 million active drivers on its many roads and highways. About 250,000 drivers end up in car crashes annually in Florida. Since almost 85 million visitors come to enjoy Florida every year, [..]
Image: http://pixabay.com/en/dog-man-attacking-canine-training-78117/ When Pets Attack, They Can Cause Serious or Even Fatal Injuries Most people like dogs. How can you resist those adoring eyes, the wagging tail, and the warm, fuzzy head that seems to appear in your lap just when you’re feeling your lowest? So many Americans like dogs, in fact, that [..]
Car accidents can result in tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of dollars in medical bills, lost wages, and car repairs. How is it decided who will have to pay for these damages and bills? In Florida, it usually starts with personal injury protection (PIP). If you experience damages that add up to less than [..]