This Fourth of July, Remember: Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving

Help prevent impaired driving crashes during the holiday weekend


FRANKFORT, Ky.  (July 1, 2024) – As Independence Day quickly approaches, Kentuckians are reminded to plan for a safe ride home if celebrations include alcohol.   

Unfortunately, the holiday can turn tragic when individuals drive while impaired. It is never acceptable to drink alcohol and drive – even after just a few drinks. Making a plan for a sober, designated driver before celebrations begin will help prevent tragedies on Kentucky roadways.  

“Ensuring safety on our highways requires a collective effort,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “As Kentuckians celebrate the Fourth of July, we urge everyone to celebrate responsibly so we all return home safely to our friends and loved ones.” 

Impaired driving crashes typically increase over holidays, so Team Kentucky is joining the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to remind drivers that “Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving.” 

“If you are under the influence of any substance and choose to get behind the wheel, you put everyone on the road in danger, including yourself,” said Transportation Secretary Jim Gray. “Drugs or alcohol not only hinder your ability to drive but also affect your judgment about whether you can or should drive. You may think you’re fine; however, impairment slows judgment, coordination and reaction times.” 

According to the Kentucky State Police database, last year in Kentucky there were 79 crashes involving a drunken and/or drugged driver over the Fourth of July holiday period, resulting in 57 injuries and four deaths. 

To prevent tragedies from occurring, follow these recommendations: 

  • Before the festivities begin, plan a way to get home at the end of the night safely.
  • If you’re impaired, use a ride-booking company, taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation to get home safely.
  • If you see an impaired driver, safely pull over and contact law enforcement. You may dial the Kentucky State Police’s toll-free line directly at 800-222-5555 or call 911.
  • If you know people who are about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to their destination safely.
  • Wear a seat belt! It is not only the law; it is the best defense against an impaired driver. Buckling up helps prevent injury and death if involved in a crash.

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