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Student who lost friend in drunk driving crash advocates for safe spring break

Spring break revelers, and gatherings and travel from the Easter and Passover holidays could be tough on the nation’s COVID response in the next few weeks,  potentially spreading more mutations of the virus, known as variants.
Posted at 5:46 PM, Mar 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-18 21:43:38-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — In the midst of spring break, the Texas Department of Transportation has tried to get the word out about their "Drive Sober, No Regrets" campaign. And for some, those words hit a little bit closer to home.

Christine Abasi is a UT Arlington senior who’s become an advocate for "Drive Sober, No Regrets." It’s all because her family friend, Marine Faris Abassi, died in a drunk driving crash in 2020.

He and some friends had been drinking before one of his friends got behind the wheel.

“That could have been a really easily avoidable problem,” Abasi said. “My friends and his friends went up in the car and were going on the highway to Dallas. And it was a single car crash because he was going maybe 30 to 40 miles per hour over the speed limit, lost control of the car.”

Faris was thrown from the car and died from his injuries 11 days later.

“It was definitely a shock, but it also was a little frustrating because that was a problem that could have been very easily avoided, if someone just decided to not drive that night or if someone else had decided to drive,” she said.

Now, Abasi spreads the message of responsibility to those heading out on spring break.

“I'd probably say that while spring break is a time to enjoy yourself, there’s also a time to make responsible decisions," she said. "And that can look like planning ahead. So, getting a ride when you know you’re going to be drinking, whether it be Uber, or a Lyft, or a designated driver, or friend, or whoever you want it to be.”

That message includes that one decision, affects many people.

“Kind of reminding people that when you’re on the road and if you get into an accident and someone happens to pass away, it’s not just you and that driver who’s affected," she said. "But it’s everybody else who knows them and who’s in their friend and family circle, as well.”

According to TxDOT, last year’s spring break resulted in 872 alcohol related crashes with 30 deaths.

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