As the end of the year approaches, people are making plans to visit their loved ones for the holidays and to celebrate their accomplishments and ring in the new year. Often these parties and get-togethers serve alcohol. Every year, some people make the unwise decision to get behind the wheel after having one too many and are arrested for driving under the influence.
NHTSA Begins 'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over'
To combat the number of drunk drivers who may choose to take to the roads during this year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is again conducting its 'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over' campaign. The campaign will run nationwide advertisements through January 1st and "law enforcement agencies across the country will be on patrol to protect the public from drunk drivers." In addition, the NHTSA is adding another feature to its program this year. People can experience the consequences of drunk driving through 'Last Call 360'. This program, which can be accessed through a cell phone or a computer, "creates a virtual bar experience" where "[v]isitors are able to interact with virtual bar patrons, play games, watch videos, order virtual alcoholic drinks and, most importantly, discover the consequences of drinking and driving."
Georgia Ramping Up Patrols
According to the Ledger-Inquirer, Georgia police are planning on being out in force this holiday season. The Nighthawks DUI Task Force, as well as, the state's Administration License Suspension program will be continued as the Georgia Department of Public Safety received a $3.16 million dollar grant from the state to fund the two programs. The program's primary goals are to "combat crashes, injuries, and fatalities caused by impaired driving and speeding; to increase seatbelt use; and to educate the motoring public on traffic safety and the dangers of driving under the influence."
Record Number Of Holiday Travelers
Drinking and driving is of special concern to officials around the holidays as there are a significant number of people who take to the roads this time of year in order to visit friends and family, or just go on vacation. In fact, the American Automobile Association (AAA), is estimating that there will be a record number of people traveling during the 2016 holiday season. AAA's Holiday Travel Forecast estimates that there will be over 103 million people traveling by various methods of transportation. This is a 1.5 percent increase from 2015. While a number of travelers will take to the skies or hop on a train, the "[t]he vast majority of travelers—93.6 million people—will take a holiday road trip." The reason for the increasing number of people driving to their destinations can be attributed to a number of things including low gas prices and rising wages, as well as an increase in consumer spending and optimism.
AAA reports that some of the most popular travel destinations are in those with warmer climates. According to bookings on AAA.com, three states warmer weather states -- California, Nevada, and Florida -- will be seeing a number of visitors. New York City is, as always, "an-ever popular holiday destination."
Be Careful This Holiday Season
The Law Offices of Richard Lawson wishes you as safe, enjoyable and joyous holiday season. If you or a loved one is arrested for driving under the influence during the holidays, please do not hesitate to contact your Cobb County DUI Attorney for assistance.