CIRCLEVILLE — On average, drunk driving crashes kill 30 people every day in the United States, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). That’s one person every 50 minutes. This New Year’s Eve, AAA encourages partygoers to make safety a top priority by doing their part to prevent drunk and drug impaired driving.

Do As I Say, Not As I Do:

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety continues to find a “do as I say, not as I do” mentality remains prevalent among motorists in regard to drinking and driving. According to the most recent AAA Foundation Traffic Safety Culture Index:

Almost all drivers (95.1 percent) say driving after drinking is very or extremely dangerous. Yet, almost 11 percent admitted to having done so in the past 30 days.

Most drivers (70 percent) say driving within an hour after using marijuana is extremely dangerous. Yet, more than seven percent of drivers personally approve of driving shortly after using marijuana.

Most drivers (87.3 percent) say driving after using potentially impairing prescription drugs is very or extremely dangerous. Yet, about 45 percent of drivers say a person driving after using potentially impairing prescription drugs would likely be caught by the police.

Ohio Drunk Driving Statistics:

More than 13,000 impaired driving-related crashes occurred on Ohio’s roads in 2018, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol. More impaired driving-related crashes happened in December than during any other month, with about 1,160 impaired driving-related crashes during that month alone. NHTSA reports alcohol contributed to 28 percent of Ohio’s fatal crashes in 2018.

Preventing Drunk Driving:

AAA encourages Near Year’s Eve party hosts and partygoers to celebrate responsibly and prevent drunk driving by following safe celebration tips:

Plan Ahead: Don’t Drive Impaired — Choose a designated sober driver, or plan to call a cab or ride sharing service if you will be drinking.

Serve Non-Alcoholic Beverages — Host responsibly and never let guests drive drunk. Ohio’s host liability law holds those who serve alcohol liable for injury or death that occurs due to their drunk guests.

Take the Pledge at PreventDUI.AAA.com — Pledge to drive drug and alcohol free, and share your pledge on social media, encouraging friends and family to do the same.

Additional holiday celebration tips and mocktail (non-alcoholic drink) recipes are available at AAA.com/Mocktails.

Every year, social media messages circulate stating that AAA offers a service called Tipsy Tow on New Year's Eve. This service is NOT available in most areas of Ohio. For a complete list of areas that offer this service, please visit AAA.com/TipsyTow.

AAA provides more than 60 million members with travel-, insurance-, financial- and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited online at AAA.com.

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