AAA is reporting almost 40 million Americans will hit the road this holiday weekend. Unfortunately, highway officials are estimating more than 560 people will lose their lives during their journey.
Here's more on how to stay safe, especially for those of you who are getting a late start and in a hurry.
Thousands will be traveling by the rest stop off of Interstate 10 for different reasons and for different destinations, but their assessment of traffic is similar and what's worse is the chance people take when they hit the road.
Paul Burris, founder of Partners for Highway Safety, says, “We're in the middle of the 101 deadliest days of the year. Between Memorial Day and Labor Day more people die than any other time of the year on the highway.”
Homicide investigator Bill Langston will join an additional 200 Florida Highway Patrol troopers this Fourth of July weekend. He says troopers as well as aircrafts above are looking for drivers following too closely, under the influence or speeding.
Langston says with so many vehicles on the road your best plan is to leave early. Area law enforcement agencies will be conducting intensified DUI patrols this weekend.
Motorists are also encouraged to call *FHP on their cell phones to report drunk, aggressive and dangerous drivers.
Drinking and Driving
Drinking and driving don't mix. Drinking and driving don't mix. Drinking and driving don't mix.
No matter how many times you've heard it, there are people who just don't get it. In fact, every 30 minutes, someone in this country dies in an alcohol-related crash. Every 30 minutes! And last year alone over one million people were injured in alcohol-related traffic crashes.
Tell everyone: kids, parents and all licensed drivers, why no one should drive a car, or ride in a car with someone who is under the effects of alcohol. It just doesn't make sense.
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ABOUT DRINKING AND DRIVING
How does alcohol affect a person's ability to drive?
The more a person drinks, the more their ability to make crucial driving decisions becomes impaired. After just one drink, a driver can begin to lose their ability to perform the tasks necessary to drive a car: braking, steering, changing lanes, and using judgment to adjust to changing road conditions. At a certain point, a driver will become legally intoxicated and can be arrested for attempting to operate a motor vehicle.
What does DUI and DWI mean?
DUI means "Driving under the Influence" of alcohol or drugs. DWI means "Driving While Intoxicated". These are terms used by police. In every state in our country there is a legal limit to how much alcohol you can have in your body if you are driving. If you drink and drive you can lose your driver's license and even go to jail.
How do you Measure how much Alcohol is in the Blood?
A driver's Blood Alcohol Content is measured by the weight of the alcohol in a certain volume of blood. Police test breath to measure a drivers BAC. It can also be tested in blood, urine or saliva. (Yuck!)
What can you do about drunk driving?
- Follow these suggestions from Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Your best defense against a drunk driver is to wear your safety belt, make sure any children in the car are in child safety seats.
- Never ride in a car operated by someone who has been drinking - call a cab or ask a friend to drive you home.
- Report drunk drivers to law enforcement from a car phone or pay phone.
- Keep a safe distance from anyone driving erratically.
Source: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/kids/research/drinking/index.cfm contributed to these tips.