With all the attention paid to the dangers of drunken driving, it's amazing so many people still do it.
Yet a national survey shows 17 million people have driven drunk at least once on U.S. streets and highways in a year's time.
It's a shameful statistic. People by now definitely know better, and still they ignore the warnings and drink and drive anyway.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted the survey late in 2008 and found 20 percent of those 16 and older reported driving within two hours of drinking alcohol.
That same year, drinking and driving was reported to be the cause of two-thirds of fatal crashes in the Tri-Cities.
DUI arrests in the Tri-Cities dropped to 619 in 2009 from 852 in the previous year, and DUI-related accidents dropped from 80 to 76 in the same span, according to the Washington State Patrol.
A reduction in DUI cases in any category is great, but the numbers are still way too high.
Even one impaired driver on the road is too many.
With all the media emphasis against driving drunk, there is no excuse for people not realizing the dangers of getting behind the wheel of a car after drinking alcohol -- even a little bit.
So if you're at a barbecue this Labor Day, remember to pay attention to how much you drink and give yourself time to recover before you drive.
Don't add to the drinking and driving statistics.