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Local deputies, advocates warn against drunk driving New Year's Eve

Posted at 6:26 PM, Dec 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-31 18:26:40-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — According to AAA, New Year's Eve has consistently been one of the deadliest days of the year for drunk driving fatalities.

Local advocates are now pleading with people in Tallahassee and surrounding areas to drive sober and save a life.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving Northwest Florida Executive Director Kristen Allen speaks frequently with families who live on after seeing loved ones suffer drunk driving fatalities.

"It is heart-wrenching when you are hearing stories about people who have lost their loved ones in a preventable crash due to drunk driving and now they're left to pick up the pieces," said Allen.

Recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows Florida ranks second in the nation for total alcohol-impaired driving fatalities.

As people turn to their respective coping mechanisms in response to the pandemic, local law enforcement officers urge everyone to be extra careful.

"This time of year is a happy season," said Leon County Sheriff's Office Public Information Officer Shade McMillian. "And, definitely if you are involved in any kind of situation where you are driving drunk you compound any kind of trauma or any kind of heartache within families right now because of the fact of it's very easy to get into a drunk driving incident but it's very hard to get out of it."

Those caught driving under the influence can have their driver's license taken away for up to six months.

Also important to note: AAA will not be providing its annual Tow-To-Go service due to the pandemic, so remember to designate a driver or plan for rideshare services.