Reminders for a safe night out over Thanksgiving


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The Michigan Liquor Control Commission is reminding people to drive safely over Thanksgiving.

In Michigan, there were 11.5% more fatal accidents during the Thanksgiving holiday than on a typical day between 2014 and 2018, a Safer America study found. And in the accidents occurring during the Thanksgiving holiday in Michigan, nearly one-third of them involved alcohol.

 “Drunk driving is a real threat to every Michigan community especially during holidays like Thanksgiving,” MLCC Chair Pat Gagliardi said. “Driving under the influence is not only illegal, it’s deadly, and no one should ever take that risk. If you are under the influence of any impairing substance, hand the keys to a sober friend instead of driving yourself home.”

  • Plan a safe way home before you leave the house
  • Designate a sober driver; or plan to use public transportation or ride sharing to get home safely
  • If you see a drunk driver on the road, call 911 to reach law enforcement
  • Have a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and make arrangements to get your friend home safely

And if you are a liquor licensee, here are a couple of things to keep in mind over the Thanksgiving holiday.

  • Ask for valid identification to verify a patron’s age is 21 years or older before selling or serving alcohol to them
  • Serve responsibly to ensure that no one becomes intoxicated in your business
  • Do not sell or serve alcoholic beverages to individuals who appear intoxicated and do not allow an intoxicated person to consume alcoholic beverages on the licensed premises
  • Intoxicated individuals who enter your establishment are not allowed to purchase or consume alcohol
  • Know your establishment’s capacity level to avoid overcrowding that can lead to altercations and obstructed exits which are safety and fire hazards
  • Maintain order and control of the premises through constant observance of customers and situations
  • Establish a policy and procedure for staff to report suspected illegal activity to management

According to NHTSA, from 2013 to 2017, more than 800 people died in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday period (6 p.m. Wednesday to 5:59 a.m. Monday), making it one of the deadliest holidays. During 2017 alone, more than one out of every three traffic fatalities during the Thanksgiving holiday period ​involved an alcohol-impaired driver.

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