No matter what your plans are this Holiday season, let’s get one big detail out of the way, shall we? If you plan to drink, whether a little or a lot, be sure you have already designated a sober driver. According to the National Safety Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) the period between Christmas and New Year’s typically has one of the highest rates of impaired driving fatalities. Don’t set yourself up to be a part of those statistics.
The holidays are a time to celebrate with friends and family. But it’s also a time to make sure you are keeping the ones you love safe. Whether you’re at a holiday gathering or a New Year’s Eve bash, many of our social plans involve driving. How many people truly know and understand that you do not have to be falling down drunk to be too intoxicated to drive? It’s simple. Buzzed driving IS the same thing as drunk driving. You can still get arrested, you can still get fined, and you CAN still injure or kill someone if you pick up those keys after you have had a couple of drinks.
Fatalities related to drunk driving are 100 percent preventable and the spike in buzzed driving around the holidays is especially alarming. The U.S Department of Transportation and the Ad Council are asking everyone to drive smart this Holiday Season and to pledge not to drive buzzed.
Is it really worth the risk? There are so many other options to consider if you plan on having a drink this holiday season:
- Have a pre-designated sober driver.
- Call a taxi.
- Carpool with a designated driver.
- Call a friend or family member.
- If you are celebrating where you can grab a room, do it!
- If you are in the city, plan on walking, or taking the subway or bus, make sure you have a sober companion. Strength in numbers!
Alcohol-impaired drivers were involved in 37% of traffic fatalities during the Christmas holiday period and 44% of traffic fatalities over New Year’s – making the winter holiday seasons one of the deadliest times to be on the road.
Take the pledge and ask your friends and family to do the same! This is not a topic to be shy about! Get the word out and YOU might just help save a life.