Pledge to Take a Sober Ride Home This Thanksgiving

Published on November 19, 2021

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ARLINGTON, Va. - Thanksgiving should be a meaningful holiday to celebrate with family and friends, but drunk driving could jeopardize your seat at the table. This Thanksgiving, the Arlington County Police Department (ACPD), the Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP), and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are partnering to remind you that Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving. Prioritize the safety of yourself and others this Thanksgiving holiday – if you plan on drinking, plan on not driving. Doing so could change your life and the lives of your passengers, pedestrians, and other drivers nearby. 

Nationally, drunk-driving-related crashes spike during the Thanksgiving holiday season. According to NHTSA, from 2015 to 2019, 135 drivers involved in fatal crashes on Thanksgiving Eve (6:00 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.) were alcohol-impaired, and over the entire holiday period (6:00 p.m. the Wednesday before Thanksgiving through 5:59 a.m. the Monday after Thanksgiving), nearly 800 people died in alcohol-impaired crashes. During the 2019 Thanksgiving holiday period, more than four times as many drivers involved in fatal crashes were alcohol-impaired during nighttime hours than during the day. 

On Thanksgiving-eve, traditionally a time of celebrations with heavy alcohol consumption, ACPD, in partnership with WRAP, is hosting a Thanksgiving anti-drunk driving event to highlight the impact alcohol has on motor skills. This free event is open to the public and will take place on Wednesday, November 24, at N. Hudson Street and Wilson Boulevard, from 8:00˗10:00 p.m.

Celebrate with a Plan

Don’t let drunk driving prevent you from making it to the Thanksgiving table – if you plan to drink, follow these simple tips for a safe and happy holiday:

  • Remember that it is never okay to drink and drive. Even if you’ve had only one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or a ride service to get home safely. 
  • If you see a suspected impaired driver on the roadway, report to your local law enforcement. To report a suspected impaired driver in Arlington County, call the Emergency Communications Center at 703-558-2222 or 9-1-1 in an emergency.
  • Do you have a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take their keys away and make arrangements to get your friend home safely.

Always remember: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving. For more information, visit www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving.

Road Closure

  • N. Hudson Street between Wilson Boulevard and 13th Street N. will be closed from approximately 6:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m. to accommodate this event. 

Motorists should be on the lookout for temporary “No Parking” signs in the area. Illegally parked vehicles may be ticketed or towed. If your vehicle is towed from a public street, call the Emergency Communications Center at 703-558-2222.