Fourth of July weekend is right around the corner, and the city of Knoxville is ready for all the festivities and fun that come with it. The attorneys at Hodges, Doughty & Carson, PLLC encourage you and your family to celebrate Independence Day to the fullest—enjoy the fireworks, grill some burgers, and spend time with loved ones.
To help you prepare for the weekend’s festivities, be sure to stop by one of these Fourth of July celebrations in Knoxville:
City of Knoxville Festival on the 4th
The thirtieth anniversary of this Tennessee tradition kicks off at 4 p.m. on Friday. Rain or shine, enjoy good music, food, and fun at World’s Fair Park. At 8 p.m., the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra will begin the KSO 30th Annual Free Pilot Flying J Independence Day Concert. This two-hour show leads up to the grand finale of the day: the 9:35 p.m. fireworks spectacular.
Volunteer Princess Fourth of July Fireworks Cruise
If you’re looking for a fine dining experience this Independence Day, take in the fireworks aboard the Volunteer Princess. Boarding at 6 p.m., cruise down the Tennessee River as you take in a view of Knoxville from the water. You’ll also enjoy a four-course dinner, included in the $74.95 ticket price. As darkness falls, you can enjoy the firework show from the luxury yacht.
Sons of the Revolutions Celebration
James White’s Fort, Knoxville’s first home, will host a Sons of the Revolution service on July 4. Stop by the courtyard for the free event to join others in the celebration of our country’s 239th birthday. The service begins at 10 a.m.
July 4th Celebration & Anvil Shoot
Stop by the Museum of Appalachia for a true regional tradition: shooting the anvil to celebrate Independence Day. Witness the big BOOM in person, and enjoy many of the activities the museum offers as part of its July 4 celebration. There will be music, bell ringing, and many summertime treats.
Be Smart, Stay Safe on the Road
Although the Fourth of July is a time of celebration, we would like to take this opportunity to remind you to be conscious of the safety of you and your family.
Independence Day falls on a Saturday this year, so we expect the celebration to extend throughout the weekend. Be aware of fellow Tennesseans who don’t practice driving safety to the extent that you do, sometimes getting behind the wheel after having too many.
According to the National Highway & Traffic Safety Association, the Fourth of July is one of the deadliest holidays of the year in the U.S. due to drunk driving crashes. From 2008 to 2012 alone, 765 people lost their lives on July 4 in crashes involving drivers with a BAC of .08 or higher.
We are not in any way trying to put a damper on your weekend—we simply encourage you to be extra cautious when getting behind the wheel. As experienced car accident and DUI defense attorneys, we’ve seen firsthand how a serious alcohol-related crash can affect an individual, a family, and a community.
How to Know if You’ve Had Too Many
If you plan on consuming alcohol this Fourth of July weekend, please do so responsibly. If you have had any alcohol, it is wise to have a designated driver, taxi service, or Uber driver take you home or to your hotel. Not only will you keep yourself safe, but you’ll also make the roads less dangerous for others on their way home from what’s sure to be a great Independence Day celebration.
In Tennessee, a DUI is defined as driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or more. However, depending on the circumstances, you may even receive DUI penalties with a BAC less than the legal limit.
Alcohol affects each person differently—one person’s BAC may rise more quickly due to their gender, height, and weight, among other factors. Even if you believe your alcohol tolerance is high, we highly recommend using a designated driver if you’ve had even a single drink.
If you have questions about drinking and driving before or after Fourth of July weekend, feel free to call our Knoxville DUI defense attorneys.
How to Recognize a Drunk Driver
Let’s say you don’t have a drop of alcohol over the Fourth of July weekend. As a driver in the Knoxville area, you should still maintain a watchful eye on the road. By practicing defensive driving, you can help prevent accidents caused by drunk drivers.
You should also be on the watch for others who may be a danger on Tennessee roadways. There are a few signs that a driver may be impaired. A helpful article from MADD provides some signs in list form. Watch out for:
- Quick acceleration or deceleration
- Weaving or zigzagging across the road
- Driving anywhere other than on a road designated for vehicles
- Almost striking an object, curb, or vehicle
- Stopping without cause or erratic braking
- Drifting in and out of traffic lanes
- Signaling that is inconsistent with driving actions
- Slow response to traffic signals
- Driving over the center lane marker
- Driving with headlights off at night
- Driving slower than 10 mph below the speed limit
- Turning abruptly or illegally
- Driving into opposite traffic on the wrong side of the road.
If you see a driver you suspect of being drunk on Fourth of July weekend, there are a few steps you should take. First, stay as far away from his or her vehicle as you can. Do not try to pass the vehicle. Record the license plate number of the vehicle, as well as any important details of the car—make, model, color, etc. Do not, however, sacrifice your own safety to obtain this information.
Finally, pull over and call 911.
If we all do our part to report drivers that may be impaired, we can help to keep Knoxville roads safer for everyone this Fourth of July weekend.
Happy Independence Day, Knoxville!
From all of us at Hodges, Doughty & Carson, PLLC, have a safe and happy Fourth of July weekend! Enjoy the firework shows, attend a barbecue, and celebrate that special day in 1776!