Study: Drunk driving fatalities rise nationally on Thanksgiving Day

·2 min read

The recent Thanksgiving holiday ranked third in the nation for holidays when drunk driving fatalities occur, read a recent study.

According to MoneyGeek’s DUI Danger Index gauge Thanksgiving was behind New Year’s Eve and Independence Day.

“Thanksgiving is 77 percent higher than its baseline,” said Doug Milnes, director MoneyGeek’s data and analytics.

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“The baseline is built of a forecast model and the forecast model takes in the latest data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) database of fatal accidents. We use five years of that data and then we utilize a time series forecast and as part of that forecast we include the holidays.”

“Maybe some people feel the need to drink after being cooped up with their relatives. You'll want to be on guard if you're driving back home on Thanksgiving night after spending the day with family and friends,” the study read.

No fatalities were reported in Eddy County by law enforcement agencies as of the morning of Nov. 29.

The Carlsbad Police Department and Eddy County Sheriff’s Office reported a total of four DUI arrests during the Thanksgiving holiday, read Eddy County Detention Center records.

More: Study indicates New Mexico has high DUI severity score in the United States

“There are much dangerous days for DUI driving when more folks are on the road, it can actually happen everyday and people should take steps to stay safe,” Milnes said of the study.

He suggested people find a designated driver and wear seat belts.

“Most DUI’s occur at night and maybe plan to return home in the evening and avoid some others who have made poor decisions later on in the evening,” Milnes said.

The American Automobile Association (AAA) predicted 53.4 Americans traveled for the Thanksgiving holiday. More than 48 million expected to travel by automobile.

In 2020, 44 million Americans traveled by automobile during the Thanksgiving holiday, read AAA data.

A pickup and a travel trailer cruise through U.S. Highway 285 in Artesia on Nov. 29, 2021. A study by MoneyGeek indicated Thanksgiving was the third most dangerous DUI holiday behind New Year's Eve and Independence Day.
A pickup and a travel trailer cruise through U.S. Highway 285 in Artesia on Nov. 29, 2021. A study by MoneyGeek indicated Thanksgiving was the third most dangerous DUI holiday behind New Year's Eve and Independence Day.

Mike Smith can be reached at 575-628-5546 or by email at MSmith@currentargus.com or @ArgusMichae on Twitter.

This article originally appeared on Carlsbad Current-Argus: Study: Drunk driving fatalities rise nationally on Thanksgiving Day

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