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In just a few days, people across Greenup County and the rest of the nation will enjoy good food, family and friends on one of America’s favorite holidays. Just about everyone loves Thanksgiving, but there are certainly people who take the celebration too far by consuming alcohol and then getting behind the wheel of a car, pick-up or SUV.

It is a recipe for disaster, of course, often ending in motor vehicle wrecks, injuries and fatalities.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving cautions all of us ahead of the holidays to never drive after consuming alcohol.

The organization has rated all 50 states on their efforts to reduce drunk and drugged driving, and unfortunately, Kentucky is rated as one of the worst in the nation.

MADD notes that drunk drivers are responsible for more than one-fifth of all traffic fatalities in Kentucky. The organization points out that we have significant room for improvement to make the commonwealth’s roads safer. MADD urges us to adopt the following measures:

  • Mandate installation of ignition interlock devices for all convicted of drunk driving
  • Make driver’s license revocation a routine part of drunk driving punishment
  • Make child endangerment laws tougher
  • Make the punishments for refusing a blood or breath test harsher

While the organization does not promise that if we take those steps, we will eliminate drunk driving here, but those kinds of measures have driven down the numbers of impaired driving crashes, injuries and deaths elsewhere.

It should be noted that we average about 175 deaths by drunk drivers every year in our state. Each and every one of those senseless tragedies involved someone’s son or daughter.

Let’s all do our part to keep Kentucky safe for the holidays and the upcoming year by refusing to drive after consuming alcohol.