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Take time to think before you drink

The Mississippi Highway Patrol is hoping to keep a good thing going for the New Year’s holiday. It reported that no one died in traffic accidents on roads monitored by troopers during the Christmas weekend.

The holiday enforcement period on state and federal highways began Friday evening and ended late Monday.

The patrol said in a news release Tuesday that officers investigated 157 crashes that injured 40 people. There were 61 DUI arrests.

Troopers, as well as local law enforcement agencies, are hoping for another holiday weekend without a traffic fatality. For that to happen,  drivers will have to put a few common sense tips into practice.

The most obvious way to stay safe this holiday weekend is to avoid drinking and driving.  New Year’s revelers may be tempted to drive after only having a drink or two but that’s all it takes to impair reaction times and judgement.

That one drink may not put you over the legal limit, but it could result in a decline in visual functions and the ability to perform multiple tasks. At about three drinks, a reduction in coordination is likely and a driver will have difficulty steering. One more drink makes it hard to concentrate and alters the brain’s ability to process information. This is the point blood alcohol concentration levels reach the legal limit for most people.

But by this point, most drivers would have a difficult time safely navigating home from a party.

If you choose to drink this New Year’s, err on the side of safety and don’t drive. Just one drink might cost you your life.