As you spend time with friends and family this Thanksgiving, you should take special care during your travels. While many believe that New Years' Eve, St. Patrick's Day or the Super Bowl present the greatest threat from drunk drivers, it is typically "Turkey Day" that takes the infamous spot each year.
Thanksgiving is the largest travel day in the U.S., resulting in an unusually high amount of drivers on the road. This heavy traffic is coupled with the busiest days of the year for bars and nightclubs, providing a deadly mix ripe for drunk-driving accidents.
How to avoid becoming a Drunk-Driving Victim
While there is no way to eliminate the entire threat that drunk drivers present to our families, there are some ways to reduce the likelihood of an intoxicated driver seriously injuring or killing you or family members on Thanksgiving.
School Bus Accident
A school-bus accident on Monday morning sent 13 children to the hospital and the driver to the Peoria County Jail.
The bus was shuttling 20 children to a Peoria district school when it jumped a curb and stopped in a residential driveway, striking two vehicles in the process. Bus driver Gary Stewart, 46, was arrested and booked for DUI after testing showed a blood-alcohol content of .04 percent. While that would typically be under Illinois' legal limit of .08, for a commercial school-bus driver the limit is .04, which Stewart allegedly exceeded.
Stewart is likely going to contest the charges, as he says the .04 percent alcohol content is inexplicable. Stewart admitted to drinking 48 ounces of beer the night.
before the crash while he watched an ugly Chicago Bears' loss on television. He also stated that he ingested an unmeasured amount of cold medicine at around 12:30 AM on Monday.
Recent Commercial Vehicle Crashes Victimize Chicago
A sting of recent truck crashes have plague a Chicago area. A dump truck crash in Bartlett caused injuries to eight people. An Elk Grove Village man driving the dump truck rear-ended two vehicles in front of him. He then crossed into oncoming traffic, striking a pickup truck and causing it to careen into another vehicle. Fortunately, the five-vehicle crash didn't claim any lives. The police charged the dump-truck driver for failing to reduce speed to avoid an accident.
A three-vehicle collision caused by a big rig on I-90 somehow avoided fatal consequences. The accident occurred near Gary when the truck driver believed he saw a deer on the interstate and over-corrected his semi. The 18-wheeler crashed through the median before blocking off the entire expressway - bringing morning commuters to a halt. The drivers of the two other vehicles struck by the semi went to the hospital but had no life-threatening injuries. The police stated that the deer was actually a paper bag.
In Stevenson, a semi truck made an illegal turn in a construction area and crushed a worker, accidentally killing him. After exiting the expressway, the driver disobeyed the signs forbidding right turns. The truck turned into the narrow bridge-construction area and the construction worker was pinned between the truck and a metal barricade. The driver received several traffic tickets and may still face prison time under Illinois law.