DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – It’s a holiday drunk driving warning, that’s arriving a couple of months early. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drunk driving crashes are three times more likely on Halloween than on New Year’s Eve.
“Shocked,” said Cheryl Bowes of Dallas. “Shocked. There will be kids all over these streets on Halloween.”READ MORE: Texas Laws Going Into Effect January 18 Range From How Dogs Are Chained, To Transgender Student Athletes
Bowes is expecting many of those trick-or-treat visitors to make a stop at her Lower Greenville-area home. As she puts the finishing touches on the make-believe terror that adorns her porch, she mulls over the drunk driving threat that officials say is all too real.
“If it’s three times worse than New Years’ Eve, people need to be aware,” said Bowes
In fact, according to the NHTSA, between 2009 to 2013, 43 percent of fatal Halloween night crashes involved drunk driving.READ MORE: Synagogue Hostage-Taker Malik Faisal Akram Had Stayed In North Texas Area Shelters
“I’m going to get the word out to my patients and families for sure,” said Priscilla Rieves. Rieves is a pediatric nurse practitioner. She loves kids and takes both Halloween fun and safety, seriously.
She has this advice for parents.
“It’s important to stay with your children, have them in something that will reflect light. Around here, in our 1920s neighborhood, streetlights aren’t that bright, so flashlights, glow sticks, things like that – and being mindful of traffic.”
Yes, trick-or-treaters and their parents must be mindful of traffic – traffic that will almost certainly include intoxicated drivers. So adults who choose to celebrate Halloween with alcohol are encouraged to do so, responsibly.MORE NEWS: Security Expert Shares 'Run, Hide, Fight' Guidance In Wake Of Colleyville Synagogue Hostage Situation
“Use your common sense, said Bowes. “Get a ride, get that Uber or Lyft or whatever they do– designate a driver.” And as Mr. Charlie– her caged, talking skeleton begins to rattle his cage, Bowes is reminded of the terror that’s real. “Let it be in the decorations, and not in the streets.”