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Connecticut’s drunk driving accident risks during holidays

Residents in Stamford, Connecticut, should be aware that holidays can increase the dangers associated with drunk drivers on the roads.

Thanksgiving is now over and people all throughout Connecticut are in the throes of planning Christmas and New Year's celebrations. Sadly, at this time of year the risk of drunk drivers causing accidents that injure or even kill innocent victims can increase. It is common around the country for the number of DUI arrests between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day to increase according to BACtrack.com.

So far this year, Connecticut has fared better than in past years. The Hartford Courant reports that as of Sunday morning on Thanksgiving weekend, the number of DUI arrests in the state is lower than for the 2014 Thanksgiving weekend. The state has also experienced fewer accident injuries over this holiday than it did last year. In both 2014 and 2015, motor vehicle accidents over Thanksgiving claimed one life.

Drunk drivers can take the joy out of the season

The National Safety Council maintains a list of what it identifies as the six holidays with the greatest amount of danger due to drunk drivers. In position number three is Thanksgiving. In position numbers five and six are Christmas and New Year's, respectively.

USA Today explains that what day of the week a holiday falls on can have an impact on the level of drunk driving activity. When a weekend is included in a holiday, the risk can often increase. December 25 and January 1 are both Fridays this year which could pose serious concerns for people on the road over those holidays.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration compared its drunk driving fatality data from five consecutive Decembers. In reviewing the information from 2001 through 2005, an interesting trend was seen with respect to drinking and driving over the holidays.

On dates not associated with holidays, 28 people died in accidents involving alcohol each day. On dates associated with the Christmas holiday, 45 people died in accidents involving alcohol each day. On dates associated with the New Year holiday, 54 people died in accidents involving alcohol each day.

A broader look at drunk driving in Connecticut

The NHTSA records for drunk driving deaths make it clear that this risk exists year round even though it may increase during the holidays. Across the state, there were 524 impaired driving fatalities from 2009 through 2013.

County by county data shows the most fatalities were in the following counties:

  • 134 deaths occurred in Hartford County.
  • 107 deaths occurred in New Haven County.
  • 99 deaths occurred in Fairfield County.

What does this mean?

Perhaps the most important thing for Connecticut residents is to take extra care knowing that some people still drink and drive. These drivers can and will continue to harm innocent people. When this happens, obtaining help from an experienced attorney is recommended as the best way to protect your rights and obtain proper compensation.