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Don't become a Halloween drunk driving statistic

Halloween isn't just for kids. Halloween night and the weekends before and after the holiday are big party nights for adults. That can involve a lot of drinking. Despite the ease of calling an Uber, Lyft or another safe ride alternative, too many people still get behind the wheel when they leave a party -- many times with tragic results.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data shows that 45 percent of people killed in Halloween night crashes in 2011 through 2015 were the victims of drunk drivers. This includes crashes between 6:00 p.m. Halloween night and 6:00 a.m. the following morning.

Drunk drivers were behind over a third (36 percent, to be precise) of fatal pedestrian crashes. More than the usual number of pedestrians are on or near the road on Halloween night as children, often accompanied by parents, go trick-or-treating.

Police, who are going to be out in force Halloween night looking for drunk drivers, remind people that "Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving" is more than a popular safety slogan. Even one drink can compromise your ability to drive safely -- and get you arrested.

Further, one drink can easily lead to two or more -- until eventually, you forget how many you've had. That's why it's essential to have a plan before you go out on Halloween, and any night, to get home safely and make sure that your friends do as well.

If you are arrested for drunk driving, it's essential to take the matter seriously. Even a first DUI can have serious consequences. It can mean jail time, fines, driver's license suspension and more. An experienced Maryland DUI attorney can work to protect your rights and try to lessen both the short-term and long-term consequences.

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