Celebrate safely on Cinco de Mayo
MIAMI-DADE – On May 5, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza, the Mexican Army scored a surprise victory over the French Empire in the Battle of Puebla, a turning point in the war that eventually drove Napoleon III’s forces out of Mexico. Today, the holiday is known as “Cinco de Mayo” and is a day that many people in both Mexico and the United States celebrate Mexican culture, food and – inevitably – drink.
Here are some statistics and tips from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Centers for Disease Control to encourage residents who celebrate Cinco de Mayo to do so responsibly, and most importantly, avoid drinking and driving:
- One third of all vehicle fatalities during Cinco de Mayo involve a drunk driver
- Every day, 29 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver, which is one death every 50 minutes.
- The annual cost of alcohol-related crashes totals more than $44 billion.
- In 2016, 10,497 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes, accounting for 28 percent of all traffic-related deaths in the United States.
- In 2016, more than 1 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics.
- Before drinking, designate a non-drinking driver when with a group.
- If you have been drinking, get a ride home, use a rideshare service or call a taxi.
- Don’t let your friends drive impaired.
- If you’re hosting a party where alcohol will be served, remind your guests to plan ahead and designate their sober driver; offer alcohol-free beverages, and make sure all guests leave with a sober driver.