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(Neb.)-December Is National Drunk And Drugged Driving Prevention Month

By: Roxie Graham-Marski Posted at: 12/12/2012 09:29 AM

(PANHANDLE)-This December, during National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month (3D Month), the Panhandle Prevention Coalition asks residents to consider what they can do to make injuries and death from impaired driving less of a threat.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, almost 30 people in the United States die every day in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver. This amounts to one death every 48 minutes. The annual cost of alcohol-related crashes totals more than $51 billion. In 2010, over 1.4 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics. That’s one percent of the 112 million self-reported episodes of alcohol-impaired driving among U.S. adults each year. Drugs other than alcohol (e.g., marijuana and cocaine) are involved in about 18% of motor vehicle driver deaths. These other drugs are often used in combination with alcohol.
Even with these astounding statistics, the dangers of drunk and drugged driving are often overlooked, especially in teens and young adults. 
The Panhandle Prevention Coalition reminds adults it is illegal to sell, give away, dispose of, exchange, deliver or permit the sale, gift, or procuring of any alcoholic liquors to or for any minor or to any person who is mentally incompetent (Nebraska Statue 53-180). 
During the holiday season and year round, the coalition encourages individuals to take steps to ensure that they and everyone they celebrate with avoids driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Excessive alcohol and drug consumption is a common problem during the holiday season and can lead to serious injury and death.
               The Panhandle Prevention Coalition recommends following these tips from the National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA), which can help people stay safe:
--Plan ahead. Always designate a non-drinking driver before any holiday party or celebration begins.
--Take the keys. Do not let a friend drive if they are impaired.
--Be a helpful host. If you’re hosting a party this holiday season, remind your guests to make sure all of your guests leave with a sober driver.
For more information, visit the Panhandle Prevention Coalition’s web site www.panhandlepreventioncoalition.org.
About the Panhandle Prevention Coalition (PPC)
The PPC is a part of the Panhandle Partnership for Health and Human Services and is comprised of local community coalitions and a regional coalition united together by a passion and dedication to healthy and safe people across the lifespan. Our efforts include, but are not limited to, reducing underage drinking, binge drinking and drinking and driving in the Nebraska Panhandle. We do this by seeking policy change at the local and state levels to reduce youth access to alcohol. Collaborating with law enforcement to facilitate, fund and standardize compliance checks, beverage server training, and sobriety checks. Educating and generating awareness about the dangers of substance abuse and consequences of minors in possession (MIPs) and buying/providing alcohol to minors.
Our community partners include concerned parents, health care workers, law enforcement, social service professionals, community leaders, elected officials, educators, business owners, volunteers and citizens both locally and statewide who seek safe communities for our children and families to live and grow.
--Panhandle Prevention Coalition


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