If you’ve already been the victim of a drunk driver, you’re likely more aware than ever of the fact that numerous people get behind the wheel while they’re under the influence. You may try to avoid being on the road late at night, on weekend evenings or at other times when people are more likely to be drinking. But, you may not realize that Thanksgiving is one of those times.
In fact, the night before Thanksgiving is considered one of the heaviest drinking nights on the calendar. There’s even a name for it — “Blackout Wednesday.” That’s backed up by data, as bars report that their sales of drinks with hard liquor rise by 114% while beer sales increase a whopping 270%.
Many people take off early from work and have an impromptu Happy Hour with colleagues or friends before heading home to prepare for a barrage of relatives. Others get together later with friends who are back in town for the holiday spending time with extended family. There are all kinds of reasons why people imbibe the night before Thanksgiving.
The increase in drunk driving continues throughout the holiday weekend. There are numerous frightening statistics to back this up. For example, over a third of all crash fatalities over the 2016 Thanksgiving holiday involved a drunk driver.
With tens of millions of people taking road trips around Thanksgiving, you’ve also got more people on the roads who have been behind the wheel for hours. They may be driving in unfamiliar areas and dealing with a carful of kids and animals. Even a glass of wine or bottle of beer before hitting the road under those conditions can seriously impact a person’s ability to drive safely.
There can be serious criminal penalties for people who injure others in crashes while they’re under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. However, victims and surviving loved ones can also take civil legal action against those drivers to seek needed compensation.