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Think Before You Drink & Drive on New Year's Eve

Here are some eye-opening statistics about drunk driving, and what will happen if you get caught.

Before you take that first sip of champagne, we want to remind you of some sobering statistics regarding DUI.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving at www.madd.org provided the following:

  • One in three people will be involved in an alcohol-related crash in their lifetime.
  • An average drunken driver has driven drunk 87 times before his or her first arrest.
  • Drunken driving costs each adult in this country almost $500 per year.
  • One person is injured from an alcohol-related crash every minute.
  • 50-75 percent of convicted drunken drivers continue to drive on a suspended license.
  • Teen alcohol use kills about 6,000 people each year -- more than all illegal drugs combined.
  • Car crashes are the leading cause of death for teens. One out of three of those is alcohol related.
  • Children who start drinking young are seven times more likely to be in an alcohol-related crash.

Since thousands of Americans die each year on the road due to drunken, drugged or distracted drivers, President Barack Obama proclaimed December "National Impaired Driving Prevention Month." To read the proclamation, click here.

If you've ignored all our warnings thus far and the idea of hurting yourself or others is not enough to keep you from driving while intoxicated, we have included a link to the Illinois State Police page that lists the penalties of DUI. You can find that by clicking here.

This column was written by Patch editor Dawn Aulet.

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