Labor Day Weekend marks the unofficial end to summer.
It's also when the most arrests for DWI occur in Minnesota.
"Everyday, we have to deal with the feelings with anger, sadness and frustration on how someone else's choice to drink and drive changed our lives forever," says DWI crash survivor Erica Bodell.
August is the worst month for DWI offenses with an average of 2500 arrests over the last five years.
Each year, more than 250 life–changing injuries are a result of alcohol–related crashes, and one in six fatal crashes during the holiday weekend are drunk–driving related.
The Minnesota Highway Patrol says the best way to keep the roads safe for everybody is to plan ahead before you get behind the wheel.
"If you're going to go out and celebrate, make sure you have that sober ... designated driver in place. If not, is a taxicab ... is a sober bus or something like that in place. Otherwise, maybe depending on the place that you're celebrating at, maybe just staying there could be the best option too," says Minnesota Highway Patrol Sgt. Jesse Grabow.
On average, one person will die and two people will be seriously injured in drinking–related crashes during the holiday weekend, so the highway patrol has a simple message for anyone thinking about drinking and driving.
"Just don't do it. Be smart. Have a plan. Just use some good common sense. Again, have a plan and have a backup plan of how you're going to get home so you're not endangering your life or the lives of anybody else," says Grabow.
A reminder not only this time of year but year–round.
Although more DWI arrests occur during this time of the year in Minnesota, the overall number of arrests have dropped from 42,000 in 2006 to 25,000 last year.