At Hanning & Sacchetto, LLP, our Whittier auto accident attorneys know New Year’s Eve is often considered one of the deadliest days on the roads due to several factors that contribute to an increased risk of collisions, injuries, and fatalities in California and nationwide.
The combination of increased traffic, celebrations, alcohol consumption, and late-night driving all contribute to what the National Safety Council (NSC) estimates will involve 375 fatalities on U.S. roads this New Year’s Day holiday period.
The NSC reported nationwide last year that alcohol-impaired fatalities (involving blood-alcohol content of 0.08 g/dL or higher) represented 31% of the total traffic fatalities. During the previous New Year’s Day holiday period, 40% of fatalities involved an alcohol-impaired driver.
Unfortunately, motorists are not the only ones in danger this holiday season. Pedestrians are 1.7 times more likely to be killed on New Year’s Day than on any other day of the year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Why Pedestrian Accidents, Injuries, and Fatalities Rise Over the New Year Holidays
New Year’s Day is the most dangerous day to be on foot for multiple reasons, including that most people believe walking while intoxicated is safer than driving while intoxicated.
What most do not consider before stepping out on foot is that almost half of the fatal accidents take place at night, often in poorly lit areas like neighborhoods, parking lots, and other private property where it is hard for motorists to see them.
Unfortunately, a significant side effect of intoxication is poor judgment on pedestrians’ behalf. Half of last year’s fatal New Year’s Eve pedestrian crashes involved alcohol — and in those, 34% of the walkers were drunk versus 14% of the drivers. The reason is simple — intoxicated people often cross against a sign, jaywalk, or even lie down on the road.
Individuals must plan and make responsible choices to reduce the risk of accidents and fatalities on New Year’s Eve. This includes arranging for alternative transportation if alcohol will be consumed, being mindful of surrounding conditions, and avoiding distractions while driving.
Contact Our California Car Accident Attorneys at Hanning & Sacchetto Today
At Hanning & Sacchetto, LLP, we hope everyone makes it home safely this holiday season. We sincerely hope you never need us. If your life, or that of someone you love, has been impacted by an impaired driver, contact our experienced auto accident lawyers in Whittier today by calling (562) 698-6446 to schedule a free consultation.