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Halloween is scary enough – keep it safe by driving sober

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Fast Lane American Government

Halloween is scary enough – keep it safe by driving sober

Fast Lane
U.S. Department of Transportation
October 25, 2012

Trick or treat They'll see you Trick or treat

From pumpkin carving, to costume parties, to trick-or-treating, Halloween is an exciting holiday for Americans of all ages--not just our kids. In fact, many of the ghosts and goblins you'll see this Halloween season are young adults heading out to bars, restaurants, and private homes to celebrate.

Unfortunately, sometimes the most frightening part of Halloween isn’t the spooky costumes and scary pranks. Halloween is a particularly deadly night due to the number of drunk drivers on our roads.

If you're heading out to celebrate this year, make sure you plan a safe and sober way of getting home.

According to NHTSA, in 2010, 41 percent of all highway fatalities across the nation on Halloween night involved a driver or a motorcycle rider with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher, making them legally drunk in most states.

That’s why this Halloween, state and local law enforcement officials across the country will be out in full force cracking down on drunk drivers with an aggressive Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over enforcement effort.

And our National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is providing safety materials such as videos, posters, and social media icons to states, communities, and organizations as part of its Halloween Drunk Driving Prevention awareness campaign, which runs from today through November 4.

Drinking and driving is one of America’s most often-committed and deadliest crimes. In 2010, more than 10,000 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes; that's one every 51 minutes.

These deaths are 100 percent preventable, and you can help. Here are a few simple ways that you can take action to keep Halloween safe for your family and everyone in your community:

Drive sober or get pulled overPlan a safe way home before the festivities begin.
Before drinking, designate a sober driver.
If you’re impaired, take a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation so you are sure to get home safely.
If you see a drunk driver on the road, contact local law enforcement.
And if you know someone who is about to drive a car or ride a motorcycle while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely.

Do Americans like a good, harmless Halloween scare? Sure we do. But there's nothing harmless about drunk driving.

Driving after you’ve had even a little too much to drink is never worth the risk. This Halloween and every day of the year, remind your friends and family to Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.

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