How Can I Avoid Drunk Drivers on Halloween Night?Published: Oct 28, 2021 in Drunk Driving
Everyone looks forward to holidays such as Halloween, but when celebrating gets out of hand, some very scary things can happen. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) posts that Halloween presents an increased danger both to pedestrians and other motorists, and it is also one of the most dangerous days of the year as far as pedestrian injuries and fatalities are concerned. Adding to the danger of the holiday is the fact that many people enjoy alcoholic beverages and then attempt to operate a motor vehicle, increasing the chance of a car accident.
How Many Halloween Night Accidents Involve Drunk Drivers?
The NHTSA also noted that 44 percent of all the fatal motor vehicle accidents on Halloween night involved drunk drivers, with most of these accidents occurring from 6:00 p.m. on October 31 through 6:00 a.m. on November 1. Younger people are more at risk because they are more likely to be out during those hours; 46 percent of the victims were between the ages of 21 and 34.
According to statistics, 38 percent of fatal Halloween accidents involved drivers or motorcyclists with blood alcohol content (BAC) levels of 0.08 and higher, while fatal collisions taking place throughout that holiday weekend had 44 percent of the drivers or motorcyclists showing the same BAC. The data also revealed that accidents were more likely to occur when the Halloween holiday fell on a Friday or Saturday. This is most likely because people are more likely to consume alcohol on the weekends, when they do not have to work the next day.
How can I Keep My Family Safe on Halloween?
You never know when you might encounter a drunk driver, so it is essential to be on guard at all times when outside during the holiday. Trick-or-treaters and their parents should wear visible clothing, but if a costume is dark in color, some reflective tape can be added. When out knocking on doors after dark, be sure to have a flashlight in hand. Some people like glow sticks, but these are not as bright as a reliable flashlight. Youngsters also tend to cut through lawns when trick-or-treating, but cutting across streets is a mistake. Pedestrians should stick to crosswalks and sidewalks and avoid crossing in the middle of a street.
When there are no sidewalks, it is best to stay on the left side of the road, facing traffic. Before crossing streets, listen for cars and look both ways before moving out. Here is another essential safety rule: Avoid distractions such as cell phones when walking about. People are always walking, talking, and texting, and engaging in these behaviors when the risk of drunk drivers is present is ill advised. Large groups of trick-or-treaters can get rowdy and be less likely to be aware of their surroundings. Taking the time to discuss these dangers with younger trick-or-treaters before they go out can really help.
How can I Drive Safely on Halloween?
In most communities, trick-or-treating starts in the late afternoon after the schools have let out and lasts until around eight or nine in the evening. Many towns post specific hours, so you can check with the town’s website to see for yourself. The safest thing to do, of course, is to stay inside and answer the door, but this is not always desirable or possible. If you do go out, obey all the traffic signs and signals as you normally would, but drive five miles an hour slower than the posted speed limits. This can give children who might dart in front of your car more time to react.
Also be sure to keep your cell phone turned off and avoid using your GPS when driving through neighborhoods. Keep your headlights on, even if it is still daylight out. If you encounter a particularly rowdy group of revelers, do not do anything that might set them off. It can be frustrating if they are horsing around in the middle of the street, but banging on the car horn or yelling can anger them and even make them violent. Just be patient and wait for them to move to a safe area. Remember that it is only one day a year, and you should be back on your way shortly.
More Halloween Safety Tips
If you are hosting a Halloween party, understand that you could be held liable if there are underage drinkers in attendance, or if any attendees become intoxicated in your home and go out driving under the influence (DUI). Be sure that no one there who is under the legal drinking age can access the alcohol and collect keys if you must. If you are planning to attend a Halloween party where alcohol will be served, pick a designated driver ahead of time or use a rideshare service to get home.
Anyone who has too much to drink can cause a serious car accident, and the consequences can be hard to live with. Drunk drivers injure and kill people, and they can end up getting sued. Besides that, they can lose their licenses, be hit with significant fines, get higher insurance premiums, and end up in jail or on probation. The penalties will depend on the number of offenses and the person’s BAC. The signs of a DUI driver include driving too slow or too fast; weaving in and out instead of driving straight ahead; quick, jerky stops and starts; and hitting, or almost hitting, a curb or other object. If you suspect that a driver is intoxicated, call 911.
East St. Louis Car Accident Lawyers at The Cates Law Firm, LLC Advocate for Safer Driving on Halloween and Throughout the Year
Holiday celebrations and entire lives can be ruined by drunk drivers who take their lives and others’ lives into their hands. If you were involved in any type of car accident and need sound, knowledgeable legal guidance, get in touch with the East St. Louis car accident lawyers at The Cates Law Firm, LLC. Our legal team will investigate the accident and fight for fair and just compensation for those injured. Call us today at 618-277-3644 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Swansea, Illinois, we serve clients in St. Louis, Belleville, East St. Louis, Edwardsville, Granite City, Waterloo, Chester, Carbondale, St. Clair County, Madison County, Monroe County, Randolph County, and other regions throughout Southern Illinois.