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Be wary of drunk drivers on the roads in winter

On Behalf of | Oct 23, 2023 | Motor vehicle crashes

Moneygeek reported that summer accounts for 28% of DUI fatal accidents, but winter is not without its risky times, especially around the holidays. In fact, New Year’s Day sees DUIs 117% above normal.

With winter on the horizon in New Jersey, being aware of drunk drivers is essential. There are a few specific issues that the public should think about when it comes to DUIs in the winter.

Holiday contributions

With holiday celebrations, family gatherings and New Year’s festivities, alcohol consumption tends to rise. Unfortunately, this often leads to impaired individuals taking to the roads, putting themselves and others at risk. Drivers must be aware around holiday periods when impaired drivers may be more likely to be on the roads.

The role of bartenders

There is another layer to winter drunk driving, and that is the role of people who could help make the situation worse or make it better. Bars and bartenders play a significant role in ensuring their patrons’ safety.

Bartenders are the frontline defense against over-serving patrons. New Jersey law strictly prohibits serving alcohol to individuals who are visibly intoxicated. This is also a moral and ethical obligation that helps to keep the roads safe.

The consequences of over-serving are far-reaching and devastating. Accidents caused by drunk driving can lead to injuries, loss of life and a profound impact on victims and their families. When bars and bartenders neglect their duty to monitor the alcohol intake of patrons, they become unwitting enablers of potentially catastrophic events.

In addition to refusing to over-serve, responsible bartenders should also monitor customers who have been at the bar for an extended period, especially if they have been drinking heavily. Offering alternatives like non-alcoholic beverages or arranging a safe ride home can make a substantial difference in preventing drunk driving accidents.

Moreover, bars should take active measures to train their staff on responsible alcohol service. This education equips bartenders with the knowledge and skills to recognize signs of intoxication and act accordingly.

Personal responsibility

Individuals who choose to drink should do so responsibly. They must designate a sober driver or utilize rideshare services to get home safely. Community awareness campaigns, along with strict law enforcement, further contribute to the deterrence of drunk driving.

As winter approaches and the holiday season beckons, it is essential for everyone to be vigilant and responsible. While bars and bartenders share in the responsibility, ultimately, the decision to drink and drive is a choice made by individuals.