Bring safe sober driving into the New Year

Published 9:21 am Saturday, December 30, 2023

Ring in the new year with safe and sober driving. The Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) wants everyone to know that while a new year may be starting, the same rules apply: No driving under the influence.

“Choosing to drive sober is a commitment to the safety of all people on the road,” said Brad White, MDOT executive director. “Prioritize the well-being of yourself and others by not driving impaired, and always have a thought-out plan for a safe and sober ride.”

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) most recent data, 37 people are killed each day due to drunk driving. That means one person dies every 39 minutes. Drunk driving deaths are preventable.

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Here are some tips from MDOT to make sure everyone has a safe and enjoyable night:

  • Plan your safe and sober ride home before the party starts.
  • If you drink, do not drive for any reason. Call a taxi, order a ride or find a sober driver.
  • Avoid all distractions and concentrate on the road.
  • Be aware of all drivers on the road. Don’t assume everyone is as safe as you.
  • Always wear your seatbelt. It is your greatest defense in a wreck.
  • Don’t be afraid to stand up to someone trying to drive under the influence. Remove their keys to take away the temptation of wanting to drive.
  • Impaired drivers are not only a danger to themselves, but also others on the road. If you suspect someone is driving impaired, call the police when it is safe to do so.

To further keep the traveling public safe as we approach New Year 2024, MDOT has suspended all interstate and four-lane highway construction during peak holiday travel times. All road construction requiring lane closures are currently paused and will resume on Jan. 1. The closures will provide maximum travel capacity and minimal construction delays for holiday travelers.

For information on how to prepare for winter weather, visit For real-time road conditions on Mississippi’s highways and bridges, download the MDOT Traffic mobile app, visit and follow @MississippiDOT on Facebook and X (former Twitter).