With the Fourth of July right around the corner, many of us will be making plans for picnic and firework celebrations. While traditionally one of the busiest days of the summer season for traveling, it is also one of the most potentially dangerous in terms of drunk driving accidents.
Car accidents caused by drunk drivers are more common over the Fourth of July than at any other time of the year, resulting in serious and potentially life-threatening injuries for thousands of drivers and passengers. To help ensure the safety of both you and your loved ones, never get behind the wheel after drinking, regardless of the amount, and follow our tips for protecting yourself against any drunk drivers you encounter on the roads.
Fourth of July Drunk Driving Accidents
While Americans love to celebrate the Fourth of July with cookouts and fireworks, too often alcohol is part of the festivities. According to fact sheets from the U.S. Department of Transportation, alcohol is a factor in over a third of all car accidents and injuries that occur in South Carolina and throughout the country. These accidents kill more than 10,000 people a year while injuring tens of thousands of others. The number of 4th of July drunk driving accidents is three times higher than at any other time of the year.
If you know you are going to a party where alcohol is being served, make a plan in advance on how you will handle the situation. Options include:
- Spending the night at your host’s home or in a nearby hotel
- Limiting the amount you drink and stopping two hours before you plan to leave
- Taking a cab home, or having a designated driver
It is not worth the risk to your life and the safety of other drivers to get behind the wheel. If you see a friend who is too drunk to drive, take their keys and call them a cab, or drive them home yourself. In addition to protecting their safety, you will be saving them the loss of freedom and the expense of being charged with Driving Under the Influence.
Protecting Yourself Against Drunk Drivers
The South Carolina Department of Public Safety will be doing their best to catch drunk drivers over the holiday by having increased patrols and setting up traffic checkpoints. They advise you to watch for signs that a driver is under the influence, such as going below the speed limit, swerving from lane to lane, making too wide of turns, and driving on the shoulder or in emergency lanes. If you encounter a drunk driver, you should do the following:
- If they are in your lane, maintain a safe distance between your car and theirs
- If they are coming right at you from the opposite lane, slow down and pull over as far as possible
- Make note of the color and type of the vehicle, and at the first safe opportunity, pull over and notify law enforcement
Get Help Today
If you are injured as the result of a drunk driver, contact the Anastopoulo Law Firm right away. Our Charleston car accident attorneys can advise you on how to get the compensation you need to recover.