The Notorious History Behind Blackout WednesdayNovember 21, 2018
Not to be mistaken for Black Friday, the unofficial start to the holiday shopping season, Blackout Wednesday has become known as the unofficial start to the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.
Whereas Black Friday got its name from the Philadelphia Police Department in the 1960’s to describe the heavy, and somewhat disruptive traffic that occurred the day after Thanksgiving, Blackout Wednesday is a term used to describe the spike in alcohol sales the day before Thanksgiving.
In the spirit of celebration, people meet up at their local bars to catch up with friends they have not seen in a while. Too often, however, they overdrink, and then drive home. As a result, a day of celebration and gratitude can become a devastating tragedy when a fatal drunk driving accident claims the life of a loved one.
The Start of a Deadly Weekend
The Thanksgiving weekend is the deadliest holiday, thanks to the number of fatal drunk driving accidents that occur over the four-day weekend. In fact, from 2012 to 2016, more than 800 people were killed in drunk driving crashes. According to the National President of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), these accidents are 100 percent preventable, and we can all do our part to make smart choices when it comes to drinking and driving.
From choosing a designated driver or calling a taxi, to using public transportation or a ridesharing service, there are a wide range of options available for getting a ride home, without resorting to drunk driving.
Data Shows Major Spike in Alcohol Sales
A restaurant management company analyzed data on the amount of food and beverages sold at restaurants on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, compared to other weeks throughout the year. They found that there was a 270 percent increase in the amount of beer sold, and a 114 percent increase in liquor sales. Food orders only went up by approximately 28 percent, compared to previous weeks.
It may be interesting to note the fact that the number of checks only went up by 18 percent. As a result, it is possible that a small number of large groups are having an impact on the massive hike in liquor and beer sales on the day before Thanksgiving.
Why the Drinking Increase?
The research is unclear about why people tend to drink more on Black Wednesday. It is, however, one of the first weekends that most college kids are home, so bars and restaurants are often filled with young people who are excited to reconnect with friends they have not seen since the summer.
Whatever the cause, there are things we can all do to prevent such tragic and avoidable accidents. MADD and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) both have holiday drunk driving awareness campaigns that urge people to make smart choices when it comes to drinking and driving.
Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent Victims of Drunk Driving Accidents
If you have been seriously injured in a drunk driving accident, you are urged to contact the Baltimore car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton at your earliest convenience. We take these accidents very seriously. Our dedicated team will seek the maximum financial compensation, protecting your legal rights every step of the way. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent car accident victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.