Don’t think the holiday spirit will get you out of a drunk-driving charge, says the Memphis Commercial Appeal. “A lot of times they think the officer will let them go because it’s Christmas,” one officer told the newspaper. “No breaks for Christmas.” A midday drinking excuse won’t work either. One woman on her way to work at noon asked an arresting officer, “At 12 o’clock, you think I’m drunk?” the officer replied: “Yes, ma’am.”
The group most likely to be involved in an alcohol-impaired fatal crash are men and women in the 21-24 age range. During the 2006 holiday season, alcohol was a factor in almost 37 percent of the fatal crashes with drivers this age. Compare that to drivers 44-54, where 20 percent of the fatal accidents involved alcohol. December is National Drunk & Drugged Driving Prevention Month and the Tennessee Highway Patrol, with assistance from other agencies, will staff more than 100 sobriety and driver’s license checkpoints through New Year’s Day.