The surprising danger of Labor Day weekend

When we think about holidays that involve a lot of alcohol, New Year's Eve and St. Patrick's Day are probably the two that come to mind. Statistics show, however, that Labor Day is among the top three most dangerous holidays in terms of drunk driving accidents.

According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), on average, one person in the U.S. dies every 51 minutes because of a drunk driver. During Labor Day weekend, the average is one person every 34 minutes.

Steps to prevent drunk driving accidents

Obviously, the most important things you can do are to not drive drunk (or buzzed) and to designate a sober driver. Consider these additional tips for a safe Labor Day weekend:

  • Drink in moderation and stop drinking long before you plan to drive.
  • Don't drink on an empty stomach.
  • Take a taxi, use a rideshare service or get a ride from a friend if you can't drive.
  • If possible, stay where you are if you can't drive or get a ride home.
  • Throw or attend an alcohol-free gathering.
  • Make sure teens and people under age 21 aren't drinking.
  • Remember your driving privileges and criminal record - accidents aren't the only consequence of drunk driving. A DUI/DWI can have serious legal penalties and financial consequences that follow you for years.

What if you are injured by a drunk driver?

Whether you are a passenger riding with a drunk driver, a pedestrian or the driver of another vehicle, you have rights after a drunk driving accident. Your auto insurance may provide some coverage, but it may not be enough to compensate you for all of your losses. You may need to file a personal injury suit against the drunk driver to get the full amount of compensation you need for medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering.

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