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San Rafael Police Department

San Rafael Police Department

For Immediate Release

Author: Sergeant Justin Graham #494
Date: November 23, 2020 11:00 AM

#BoycottBlackoutWednesday This Thanksgiving Season

San Rafael, CA – This Thanksgiving holiday, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is teaming up with the San Rafael Police Department to spread the message about the dangers of drunk driving. A popular trend during the Thanksgiving holiday, “Blackout Wednesday” occurs on the eve of Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, the trend encourages the heavy consumption of alcohol, which is why we’re working hard to get drunk drivers off the roads.

This Thanksgiving Eve, on November 25, 2020, NHTSA and its partners are conducting a social media blitz featuring the hashtag #BoycottBlackoutWednesday to help deliver lifesaving messages into the public conversation and encourage positive actions that can help reduce impaired driving on the roadways. Remember: nationally, it is illegal to drive with a BAC of .08 or higher, except in Utah, where the BAC limit is .05. If you are under the influence of any impairing substance, hand the keys to a sober friend instead of driving yourself home.

“Drunk driving is a real threat to our community every day, and that threat increases during holidays like Thanksgiving,” said Motor Officer Jack Carpenter. “Blackout Wednesday is a dangerous trend. Driving under the influence is deadly and illegal, and no one should ever take that risk.”

SRPD will have extra DUI patrols during this Thanksgiving holiday period to locate and arrest DUI offenders.  The DUI patrols are funded by a grant through the Office of Traffic Safety.

Drunk-driving-related crashes spike during the Thanksgiving holiday season. According to NHTSA, from 2014 to 2018, 138 drivers involved in fatal crashes on Thanksgiving Eve (6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.) were alcohol-impaired, and over the entire holiday period (6 p.m. the Wednesday before Thanksgiving through 5:59 a.m. the Monday after Thanksgiving) more than 800 people died in alcohol-impaired crashes. In fact, during the 2018 Thanksgiving holiday period, more than three times as many drivers involved in fatal crashes were alcohol-impaired during nighttime hours than during the day. 

The bottom line is this: If you know you’re headed out for a night of drinking, make sure you plan for a sober ride home. It is never safe to get behind the wheel of a vehicle while drunk or otherwise impaired. Remember: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving.

Options to Get Home Safely

If you’re planning to head out to the bar or to parties during the Thanksgiving holiday, make sure you plan for a sober ride home. Don’t leave your house without a plan on how to get home safely — once you start drinking you likely won’t make good choices. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for a safe night out.

  • Remember that it is never okay to drink and drive. Even if you’ve had only one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or a ride service to get home safely.
  • If you see a drunk driver on the road, contact the San Rafael Police Department.
  • Do you have a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and make arrangements to get your friend home safely.

By working together, we can save lives and help keep America’s roadways safe. Please join us in sharing the lifesaving message Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving, and use the hashtag #BoycottBlackoutWednesday during the holiday weekend.

For more information, please visit www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving.

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Posted: November 23, 2020 11:07 PST by Sergeant Justin Graham #494

Updated: November 23, 2020 11:20 PST by Justin Graham


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