People in New Mexico should know by now that drinking after consuming alcohol is dangerous. On top of that, drinking and driving can put a person at risk for criminal charges and a series of unpleasant criminal penalties, including a lifelong criminal record. Unfortunately, these realities seem to be unable to stop some drivers from making what is a well-known risky and negligent choice.
As reported by Artesia News, 59 drivers around the state were arrested for and charged with driving under the influence offenses by New Mexico State Police during the recent Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Enforcement was stepped up for the five days beginning on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. Concerns about drunk driving during holidays will continue all the way through New Year's Day.
According to the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility, 32 percent of all vehicular fatalities over Christmas in 2016 involved a driver with a blood alcohol content of at least 0.08 percent. Another four percent of deaths at this time involved drivers who were not legally impaired but had alcohol levels up to 0.07 percent in their systems.
Last year, more than 10,800 people were killed on American roads and highways at the hands of drunk drivers. More than 7,000 of those people died in crashes involving a driver with a BAC greater than 0.14 percent, significantly higher than the legal limit of 0.08 percent. In all, nationwide automobile accident deaths involving alcohol represented 29 percent of all fatalities in motor vehicle crashes. These accidents are completely preventable if people would make responsible choices and consider the lives of others.