101 Town Center, P.O. Box 5655, Bella Vista, AR 72714 (479)876-1255

Cinco de Mayo: Drive sober or get pulled over

Cinco de Mayo is a popular day to celebrate Mexican American culture across the United States. Bella Vista officers want to ensure that you and your friends stay safe while celebrating Cinco de Mayo this year by remembering one important piece of advice: Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over. If you plan to drink, it’s essential to arrange a sober ride home – someone who hasn’t had any alcohol.

To help keep your community safe, BVPD and other Arkansas law enforcement officers are teaming up with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to spread the message about the dangers of drunk driving, starting May 5. Even one drink can be one too many.

Drunk driving is the leading killer on America’s roads. According to NHTSA, 10,142 people were killed in drunk-driving crashes in 2019, accounting for nearly one-third of traffic fatalities. On average, more than 10,000 people were killed each year from 2015 to 2019; one person was killed in a drunk driving crash every 52 minutes in 2019.

Historically, about one-third of all crashes on May 5 involve a drunk driver, according to the NHTSA. In 2019, 47 people died in drunk-driving crashes during Cinco de Mayo, accounting for 38 percent of all traffic deaths, according to NHTSA.

If you’re the designated driver, make sure you don’t drink so you can keep that promise of safety to yourself and your passengers. It can be a long night, but people are counting on you, not to mention the other drivers, passengers and pedestrians on the streets. Take the role of designated driver seriously – people are relying on you.

For more information on impaired driving, visit https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving or call the Arkansas Highway Safety Office at (501) 618-8136. For more on Arkansas’ ongoing Toward Zero Deaths campaign to eliminate preventable traffic fatalities, visit www.TZDArkansas.org.