MoDOT Warns Motorists To Drink Responsibly During The Holidays

JEFFERSON CITY – As you attend that holiday par­ty, or just stop off for a so­cial hour, please remember that your last drink could be someone else’s last breath. Drinking and driving is a deadly combination that ru­ins the holidays for many families.

The Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety wants to make sure everyone ar­rives alive at holiday gath­erings this season. The best ways to ensure safe travel are to drive sober and buck­le up.

Thanksgiving weekend is one of the deadliest holi­days of the year in Missouri due to traffic crashes,” said Bill Whitfield, Coalition executive committee chair. “Heavy traffic coupled with Missouri weather is enough to contend with, without adding alcohol or drugs to the mix. Driving impaired is never worth the risk of a tragedy.”

Over the 2016 Thanks­giving holiday, there were 14 people killed and 48 seriously injured in Mis­souri traffic crashes. Five of the people killed and 14 of those seriously injured involved a substance-im­paired driver.

Last year in Missouri, 219 people were killed, and 666 seriously injured in crashes that involved at least one substance-impaired driver.

An impaired driving conviction can take away your driving privileges, cost you thousands of dol­lars and land you in jail,” said Whitfield.

If you suspect a drunk driver or have a roadside emergency, call 1-800-525- 5555 or *55 on a cell phone for assistance from the Mis­souri State Highway Patrol.

We are all part of the so­lution. Please consider the following tips:

Don’t risk it – if you plan to drive, don’t drink.

Encourage safe driv­ing behaviors among family, friends and co-workers.

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Choose a designated driver before party­ing. A designated driver is someone who drinks NO alco­hol at all.

Take mass transit, a taxicab or ask a friend to drive you home.

Party hosts should include alcohol-free beverages.

Spend the night where the activity is being held.

Report impaired driv­ers to law enforce­ment.

Always wear your safety belt – it’s your best defense against an impaired driver.

For more information, please visit www.saveMO­lives.com.

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