The Dangers Of Driving Thanksgiving Weekend

While many people are familiar with Black Friday and Cyber Monday due to their sales for the holiday season, not everyone knows about Black Wednesday. Black Wednesday is the day before Thanksgiving and it officially starts “DUI season” for the holidays. The season runs through New Year’s Day and many law enforcement agencies ramp up both DUI and license checkpoints as well as amp up saturation patrols. DUI arrests and accidents also tend to go up during this time, thanks to all the holiday parties and gatherings taking place. CBS Local San Francisco reports that the holiday DUI season began with three fatalities in two suspected DUI accidents. 

The California Highway Patrol reported that over Thanksgiving Weekend at least one driver was arrested every 36 minutes for suspicion of DUI. In addition, three people were killed on Bay Area roadways in suspected DUI accidents. Between November 27th and December 1st, officers from CHP’s Golden Gate Division arrested 173 people on suspected DUI charges. 

Over that same time frame, there were two traffic accidents where it is thought that drugs or alcohol intoxication was involved. One of the incidents took place early Sunday morning on the northbound Highway 101 connector to Interstate 280. 21-year-old Esteban Aguilar Jimenez was driving at a high rate of speed when his Dodge Challenger tried to overtake a Nissan Rogue. At about 4:10 a.m., he crashed into the vehicle. 

The Nissan went out of control and across the access road, crashing into a guardrail. One person died at the scene. Others had to be extricated from the vehicles. A second person succumbed to their injuries at the hospital. Several other people suffered injuries that were moderate to major in the accident. 

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