Summer Celebrations Raise Danger Of Drunk Driving

As summer approaches, everyone looks forward to barbecues, backyard parties, and celebrating holidays like Memorial Day and July 4th with a few nice, cold beers.

As summer approaches, everyone looks forward to barbecues, backyard parties, and celebrating holidays like Memorial Day and July 4th with a few nice, cold beers.

What they don?t foresee, however, are the consequences they face when they leave those parties inebriated and get behind the wheel of a car.

?Unfortunately, drunk driving has almost become a summertime tradition,? says Stephen Della Valle, author of the new addiction and recovery memoir Rising Above the Influence. ?People get together to eat, drink and enjoy the weather, and forget to monitor their alcohol intake or appoint a designated driver.?

Statistics show that almost half of all traffic accident fatalities on Memorial Day and July 4th can be blamed on alcohol.

?Driving under the influence is an easily preventable phenomenon,? says Mr. Della Valle. ?When you go to a friend?s barbecue and have to drive yourself home, take responsibility?limit how much you drink, or find someone to give you a ride. It?s really as simple as that.?

Many people think that driving drunk or even just ?buzzed? is harmless. However, that sort of thinking has led to:
? Over 16,000 fatal, alcohol-related traffic accidents in a year?that?s one every thirty minutes
? One death caused by a drunk driver every thirty-nine minutes
? Close to 1.4 million arrests per year for DUI
? Alcohol-related crashes that have cost the American public over $114 billion
? More than half a million people injured in crashes where alcohol was present
? Over 200 children under the age of fourteen killed while riding with a drunk driver

State and national laws have aimed at combating the DUI epidemic, but it?s slow work. Aggressively enforced blood alcohol concentration limits, driver?s license suspensions, sobriety checkpoints and community-based approaches have all proven effective in stemming the DUI problem?but not eradicating it.

?Addiction is often at the heart of the problem here,? notes Mr. Della Valle. ?And that?s not an easy battle to win. But no matter the cause, DUI is really a national crisis that cannot be ignored.?

Stephen Della Valle is president of the board of directors at Turning Point rehabilitation center in Verona, New Jersey. Currently celebrating twenty years of sobriety, he lives in Oak Ridge, New Jersey, with his wife, Donna. He has three children.

Rising Above the Influence is available now (ISBN: 0-9801776-0-X; softcover; Oak Ridge Press) on,,, and at fine bookstores everywhere.


Contact Details

Company Name: Arbor Books
Issued By: Olga Vladi
Phone: 877-822-2500
Address: 244 Madison Avenue, #254 New York, NY
Zip: 10016
Website: Visit the website

by Olga Vladi (few years ago!)

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