December is National Impaired Driving Prevention Month and the Athens Police Department calls on all residents to be safe and sober while behind the wheel.
"Many people only think of alcohol or illegal drugs when talking about this topic, but other substances can also impair your driving," said Police Chief John Densmore. "Legal, over-the-counter medications like those for colds and flu can also affect a person's reaction time when driving."
"The bottom line is to make sure you are clear-headed and alert when driving," he said.
The stakes are high. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, one person in Texas dies every eight hours and 31 minutes in a DUI-alcohol-related traffic crash.
Last year, Texas saw 48,641 traffic crashes during the holiday season—Dec. 1, 2021, through Jan. 1, 2022—which resulted in 433 fatalities and 1,695 serious injuries. Almost a quarter of those deaths -- 23 percent -- were DUI-alcohol related with 98 people killed and 236 seriously injured in drunk-driving crashes.
Give yourself the greatest gift of all this year and don't drive while impaired.