It’s almost time to say goodbye to 2020, but experts say that New Year’s Eve is one of the most dangerous nights to be on the roads. Experts are worried the stresses of COVID-19 could contribute to an even more dangerous night this year.
Mark Madeja with AAA said a strong motivation to drink on the holiday paired with an eagerness to forget a rough year could lead to more DUIs and crashes.
"When you overlay that against COVID with stress and anxiety way up, and for everybody ready to let this year go in the rearview mirror, it's going to be extremely dangerous," Madeja said.
He said wrecks have been up this year in general and thinks the dangerous driving that marred 2020 could spill into the holiday.
"We are seeing aggressive driving up," Madeja said.
Even though fewer people are out on the roadways, there have been more deaths that AAA attributes to dangerous driving.
Last year there were nearly 500 car crashes throughout the holiday, killing four people. OHP said 24, about 16%, of the wrecks they worked were alcohol or drug related.
OHP Trooper Russell Callicoat said you'll see more law enforcement on the road looking for dangerous and drunk driving this New Year's Eve.
"There's no excuse. There's no excuse to drink and drive. I mean this gets played over every year, don't drink and drive. Yet we still have people get out there and drink and drive," Callicoat said. "That's why we are going to continue to put people on the street, more people on the road looking for those impaired drivers to remove them from the roadways."
Officials seriously urge you to make a plan to get home safe if you plan on drinking.