According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), each year, more than 10,000 people die in alcohol-related crashes; in 2012, there was 1 drunk driving fatality every 51 minutes. While drunk driving is a public concern year-round, traditionally, New Year's Eve and Thanksgiving are two of the worst days of the year for alcohol-related crashes.
In order to stop this epidemic that is particularly worse during the holidays, law enforcement in every state and in most cities is cracking down on drinking and driving from December 12th through January 1st, and Houston is no exception. The NHTSA's campaign is warning drivers, "They'll see you before you see them."
Houston Launches a Campaign Against Drunk Driving
On January 31, 2014, between the hours of 6 p.m. and midnight, there were 218 alcohol-related traffic crashes in Texas, which resulted in 10 deaths. That was a 25% increase from 2012.
As a result of what happened a year ago, the Texas Department of Transportation is launching its own campaign in hopes of keeping the roads a little safer this holiday season. They are doing more than targeting drunk driving, but they are trying to prevent "buzzed" driving as well.
It's a known fact that drunk driving fatalities increase on New Year's Eve. So, Texas drivers will notice electric signs on local highways and campaigns on TV, where law enforcement will be sending a heavy anti-drinking and driving message to potential drunk drivers.
In Houston, law enforcement has changed their message to state that buzzed driving is drunk driving. Meaning, you don't have to be completely intoxicated, you can be just a little buzzed to be arrested for DWI in Houston.
Until Jan. 02, troopers with the Texas Department of Public Safety are running enhanced patrols that are putting more troopers out on the roads to catch intoxicated drivers.
2012 drunk driving statistics:
- In December of 2012, an average of 27 people died each day in drunk driving crashes.
- An average of 1 drunk driving fatality occurred every 51 minutes in 2012.
- During the 2012 holiday season, 3/4 of drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes were driving at night.
- In 2012, from midnight to 3 a.m., nearly 2 out of 3 fatal crashes involved a drunk driver.
If you have been involved in an accident with an intoxicated driver, we urge you to contact a Houston personal injury attorney from The Daspit Law Firm. We work strictly on a contingency fee basis, so there is no fee unless we win your case.
Call our office toll free at (713) 364-0915 to schedule a free consultation.