Cinco De Mayo: The Damage Done by Holiday Drinking

Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Battle of Puebla, which took place on May 5, 1862. The Mexican underdogs were able to defeat the massive and well-equipped French army. Food, drinks, dancing, and cultural celebrations take place across Mexico and the U.S., with more alcohol consumed on this day than St. Patrick’s Day and even Super Bowl Sunday. Avoid getting behind the wheel of your vehicle at the end of the night for your own safety and the safety of other drivers and pedestrians.

cinco de mayo parade

Cinco De Mayo: The Damage Done By Holiday Drinking

According to the Centers for Disease Control, one person dies every 51 minutes due to accidents involving someone under the influence of alcohol. Those odds increase during the holidays, and while Cinco De Mayo is not officially a holiday in America, it is still widely celebrated.

This year May 5th falls on a Friday – the perfect weekday for people to attend multiple parties without worrying about work the next morning. With more parties leading into the weekend, more drinking and driving may occur. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 38% of all motor vehicle fatalities that happened around May 5th involved alcohol-impaired car and motorcycle drivers, with blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) of .08 and higher. And, BACtrack Breathalyzers named Cinco De Mayo one of the deadliest holidays for young drivers.


Plan Ahead to Stay Safe

Make your festivities worry-free by planning ahead. If you want to get back to your own place at the end of the night, pre-order a taxi, arrange for a designated driver, or download an app such as Lyft or Uber so you can call a taxi at the end of the night.

If there is a possibility that you will not make it home at the end of the night due to the distance or if you have more drinks than planned, ask to stay with a friend or coworker for the night. Even if you anticipate having a responsible night, give a heads up to one person in case you end up in a situation where you can’t drive or find transportation back home.

Instead of having one drink after the next, have a glass of water between every alcoholic beverage to stay more hydrated and eat throughout the night. Tasty Mexican food is going to be part of any Cinco De Mayo party and you should take advantage of it!

Another option to avoid driving is to host a party at your own place, or plan a night out within walking distance. Keep a car service on speed dial in case you need to arrange transportation for any of your guests. You may also want to prepare an extra set of sheets for anyone needing to crash on your couch.

If you are not a drinker, consider offering your services as a designated driver. California-based app, DDVIP encourages DD’s to drive their party-going friends with incentives like restaurant coupons, discounts to local shops, and more.

Too many people die due to drunk driving each year. Have fun this Cinco De Mayo, but stay off the roads and highways if you plan to drink.