Statistics show that every day in the United States, 28 people are killed in drunk driving crashes and hundreds more are injured. With the holiday season comes a higher risk of sharing the road with a drunk driver, especially on a night like New Year’s Eve. New Year’s Day is the most dangerous day of the year for drunk driving on our nation’s roadways. In fact, in 2012 alone over half of all traffic fatalities on New Year’s Day (after midnight) involved a drunk driver. Last year, 70 people died in drunk driving accidents on New Year’s Eve, according to Mothers Against Drunk Drivers.
Many choose to spend New Year’s Eve at various restaurants, clubs, parties, and so forth, and if you plan on drinking, it’s important that you have a plan to stay safe. Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) put together some helpful tips to keep you and your loved ones safe this New Year’s Eve:
- Before you begin your New Year’s Eve celebration make sure you have a plan to get home safely. If you plan on drinking, you should designate a non-drinking driver ahead of time and consider leaving your keys at home to resist any temptation to drive yourself. If you are unable to find a designated driver, consider programming the phone number of a local taxi service into your phone so you can arrange transportation when needed.
- If someone you know is drinking do not allow that person to get behind the wheel. Suggest alternate ways of getting to their destination (a cab, a sober driver, public transportation). For more tips visit How to Prevent Someone from Driving Drunk.
- Never get in the car with someone who has been drinking. There are plenty of alternatives to get home safely, it simply isn’t worth the risk.
- If you see someone driving drunk, call the police. Getting drunk drivers off the roads prevents tragic accidents and saves lives.
Hosting a party?
- If you’re hosting a party confirm with your guests that they have a plan for a safe way home.
- Consider planning activities that do not revolve around drinking. Games and other fun activities can engage people and result in a lower consumption of alcohol.
- Have the number of a taxi service or a rideshare app readily available for those in need.
- If you need to accommodate guests who cannot drive, consider offering your sofa or guest room for the night.
Mothers Against Drunk Drivers have also put together a Safe Party Guide to help you throw an entertaining and safe party.
Make this New Year’s holiday something to celebrate by preventing drunk driving.
Happy New Year!