Drunk Drivers Make Up Third of Fatal Crashes on Cinco de Mayo

 Drunk Drivers One-Third of Fatal Crashes on Cinco de Mayo

Fifth of May Holiday, Also Known as Cinco de Drinko

Roughly one in three fatal crashes on Cinco de Mayo involves a drunk driver in the United States, ranking the holiday higher than several others the nation.

Just five years ago, a deadly crash on Cinco de Mayo involving street racing resulted in the death of a 24-year-old San Jose man. The young man’s life was cut short and he never got to fulfill his dream of becoming a police officer.

Two years ago, a 24-year-old Watsonville man died on the May 5th holiday in a hit-and-run pedestrian accident on Main Street in the city where he lived.

The average number of DUI deaths on Cinco de Mayo in the U.S. even ranked higher than other major holidays five years ago in 2019. That year, the May 5th holiday had 125 deaths compared to New Year’s Eve (110), St. Patrick’s Day (89), Christmas Day (101), and Valentine’s Day (66), according to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Fortunately, the number of deaths has declined in more recent years from a staggering 134 in 2018 to 88 deaths in 2021.

What is Cinco de Mayo?

The annual Cinco de Mayo celebration is held on May 5 as a way to celebrate Mexico’s victory over the Second French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in 1862.

While it’s not really celebrated in Mexico, those of Mexican decent first celebrated it here in California a year later in 1863 with fireworks and folkloric songs. Over the years, the Mexican celebration expanded to parades, music, battle reenactments and food, but more recently it became all about drinking booze in the USA.

You don’t have to be from Mexico to join in the festivities, just like you don’t have to be Irish to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. In fact, drinking is such a big part of the celebration here that Americans have coined the term, Cinco de Drinko.

Drunk Driving Death Toll

Drunk driving is one of the top causes of fatal crashes, claiming the lives of 10,142 people in 2019 making it the leading cause of death on roads throughout the United States, the NHTSA reports.

It’s for that reasons, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) urges people who go out drinking on Cinco de Mayo to designate a non-drinking driver, take a taxi or public transportation.

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