Thanksgiving is one time of the year when it is especially important not to drive drunk. While you should always make sure you are sober behind the wheel in order to avoid accidents or arrests, there are certain times when impaired driving presents an even greater risk than normal. Thanksgiving is one of those times.
Thanksgiving is a very bad time to be on the road after drinking because your chances of an arrest go up. Your arrest could trigger a host of unpleasant and long-lasting consequences, from higher car insurance costs to the temporary suspension of your license to drive. The consequences of impaired driving aren’t worth it, so you should make sure to avoid DUIs in Columbia, SC over the Thanksgiving weekend.
WMBF News explained the reason for the increase in arrests for driving under the influence that happens over the Thanksgiving holiday season. According to the news report, South Carolina Department of Public Safety institutes a plan during the Thanksgiving holiday to try to crack down on impaired drivers.
Department of Public Safety (DPS) partners with local law enforcement agencies throughout South Carolina. Together, DPS and local police officers put many more patrol officers on the roads of South Carolina during the Thanksgiving holiday period. This period is defined as the Wednesday before Thanksgiving until the Sunday night after the holiday.
These patrol officers who are put on duty are there for two primary reasons: to crack down on impaired drivers and to crack down on speeding motorists. Not only are police on patrol, but South Carolina law enforcement officials encourage motorist to report on fellow drivers who are impaired. Motorists can call to report reckless drivers or drivers who they think may be drunk. The hope is that the increase in police on the roads, coupled with encouraging motorists to report problems, will reduce crash rates by getting more impaired drivers off the street.
Their efforts work. WMBF reviewed online booking records from a local detention center and found there were 11 arrests made in connection with driving under the influence of alcohol over Thanksgiving. These 11 arrests were made in a very brief span of time, between midnight on the Thursday of Thanksgiving and 3:20 AM the Friday after Thanksgiving. Booking reports also showed that in a 24-hour period encompassing the Thanksgiving holiday, more than 40 percent of all suspects who were booked in the detention centered had been charged with either DUI or with having an open container in their vehicles.
Of course, some of these allegedly impaired drivers may actually be innocent or may have had their constitutional rights violated by aggressive enforcement efforts. Those who are caught up in a Thanksgiving crackdown of impaired motorists need to respond aggressively to the serious offense they have been charged with so they can fight against a conviction for driving while impaired.