In California an average of six people are killed and 110 seriously injured during the Fourth of July holiday
SACRAMENTO — As thousands of Californians plan to celebrate the Independence Day holiday with picnics and other outdoor activities, they are cautioned to arrange for one other item, a designated driver. A partnership of the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC), California Highway Patrol (CHP), Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) and local law enforcement agencies will focus on keeping communities safe by either removing impaired drivers from the roadways or preventing them from driving by getting an educational message out before the holiday.
ABC agents will be on duty statewide and some will check on ABC licensed businesses to prevent underage or intoxicated people from being served. “We ask ABC licensees to be vigilant by checking identifications and not serving underage persons and obviously intoxicated patrons this holiday,” stated ABC Director Jacob Appelsmith. “Checking identifications and promoting responsible beverage consumption can prevent DUI’s, save lives and make communities safer.”
During the Fourth of July holiday period from 2011 – 2015, 751 people were killed in DUI collisions nationwide. In California an average of six people are killed and 110 seriously injured during the holiday.
ABC recommends these safe alternatives to drinking and driving:
• Plan ahead: Plan a safe way home before the fun begins.
• Designate a driver: Before drinking, designate a sober driver.
• Volunteering to be a sober driver? The Office of Traffic Safety Designated Driver – Very Important Person (DDVIP) program partners with bars and restaurants to offer nonalcoholic specialty drinks for DDs, among other deals.
• Drugs, medication and alcohol can equal crashes: Statistics have revealed that 30 percent of drivers in fatal collisions had one or more drugs in their systems. A study of active drivers showed more tested positive for drugs that may impair driving (14 percent) than did for alcohol (7.3 percent). Of the drugs, marijuana was most prevalent, at 7.4 percent, slightly more than alcohol.
• Report drunk drivers: If you happen to see a drunk driver on the road, don’t hesitate – “Report Drunk Drivers! Call 911!” The call you make may save a life!
Funding for the extra DUI enforcement operations is made possible by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.