Thanksgiving Eve revelers beware: Find a sober ride home

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ROCHESTER - Rochester Police today urged Thanksgiving Eve revelers to think before they drink as they begin what should be a joyous, relaxing four-day weekend with family and friends.

Over consumption of alcohol is a popular trend during the Thanksgiving holiday, especially tonight on the Eve of Thanksgiving, Rochester Police Capt. Todd Pinkham noted today.

"We want to remind everyone out and about this Thanksgiving holiday that drunk driving is dangerous and illegal, period," Pinkham said. "If you are under the influence of any impairing substance, hand the keys to a sober friend instead of driving yourself home."

According to, Thanksgiving Eve is the most popular night of the year to go out drinking, even moreso than New Year's Eve, and the reasons are fourfold.

  1. Most people are off from work the next day
  2. No one wants to entertain the night before hosting a big Thanksgiving meal

  3. Everyone is home and wants to see old friends

  4. A big meal the next day is a good hangover cure

Drunk-driving-related crashes spike during the Thanksgiving holiday season (6 p.m. Wednesday to 5:59 a.m. Monday), making it one of the deadliest holidays on our roadways, Pinkham said.

"If you know you're headed out for a night of drinking, make sure you plan for a sober ride home," he said. "It is never safe to get behind the wheel of a vehicle while drunk or otherwise impaired. Remember: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving."

Rochester Police offer the following tips.

Options to Get Home Safely

If you're planning to head out to the bar or to parties during the Thanksgiving holiday, make sure you plan for a sober ride home. Don't leave your house without a plan on how to get home safely -- once you start drinking you likely won't make good choices. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for a safe night out.

  • Remember that it is never okay to drive impaired. Whether you've had one alcoholic beverage, an impairing substance, or both, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or a ride sharing service to get home safely.
  • If you see a drunk driver on the road, contact Police. That call could save a life!
  • Have a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and make arrangements to get your friend home safely.
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