The Driving Dead
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Transportation, Illinois State Police and local police agencies throughout Illinois Wednesday warned motorists one of the most frightening things about Halloween is the possibility of being involved in a serious injury or fatal crash for failing to drive safely.
“Halloween is a fun holiday to celebrate, but poor decisions too often lead to real tragedy on Illinois roads,” Acting Illinois Transportation Secretary Erica Borggren said. “This Halloween, law enforcement will be on the lookout for drunk and unbuckled drivers to help keep the fun from turning into a deadly night.”
The Halloween traffic enforcement crackdown takes place as Illinois begins an end-of-the-year, two-month drive to keep motor vehicle fatality numbers moving in the right direction. This final push seeks to keep motor vehicle fatalities as low as possible during a time of year that can be deadly on Illinois roads. As of Oct. 29, Illinois motor vehicle fatalities are at 763, 86 fewer than the same timeframe last year.
Data from IDOT shows on Oct. 31 through Halloween night (midnight Oct. 31 through 5:59 a.m. Nov. 1) during the last five years, four out of 19 total fatalities (22 percent) involved a driver or motorcycle operator who had been drinking. Last year in Illinois, two individuals died in crashes during the same timeframe and none of those fatalities involved a drinking driver.
This Halloween, buckle up every trip, every time. If you plan to drink, plan now how you’ll get home.
• Before the Halloween festivities begin, plan a way to safely get home at the end of the night. If you wait until you’ve been drinking, you’re more likely to make the wrong decision to drive drunk.
• Always designate a sober driver.
• If you are impaired, take a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation.
• Walking impaired can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. Designate a sober friend to walk you home.
• Use your community’s sober ride program, if available.
• If you see a drunk driver on the road, contact local law enforcement.
• If you know someone who is about to drive or ride impaired, take their keys and help them make safe travel arrangements to where they are going.
Bringing further attention to dangerous driving behavior, the Halloween enforcement effort is accompanied by the innovative “The Driving Dead” website series. The series includes short videos featuring Michael Rooker, of the popular TV series “The Walking Dead,” and a cast of characters who find themselves in situations depicting the dangers of driving impaired and not buckling up.
Fans can connect with “The Driving Dead” on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for up-to-date news and behind-the-scenes looks at the series as well as to watch future episodes.