Every single day, approximately 30 people die through drunk driving accidents in the United States of America.
While an accident by itself is tragic, a preventable one is doubly so. And there are just so many ways to prevent drunk driving.
Everyone loves a good night out, and no one ever thinks of bad things happening to themselves. It’s almost an immunity we presume, assuming that these accidents are just numbers or something distant you observe in the news.
However, it’s time to face reality. They do happen to everyday people like you and me. And responsible driving goes a long way in keeping yourself and the people around you safe.
Here are a few tips you can use to become a more responsible drinker.
1. Have a Key Keeper
Despite being in a drunken state, a lot of people believe that they’re just fine at that moment. Your brain, against its better judgment, tricks you into believing you can drive back home.
If your brain has a habit of doing this, or if you have somewhat of a drinking problem, it’s best to hand over your keys to a trusted (preferably sober) friend who can keep them from you. If you can’t find your keys, there’s no way you’re going to drive back home!
2. Plan Your Night in Advance
Pre-planning is an excellent way to avoid doing something you regret. Plan exactly how you’re going to get to the venue, and how you’re going to get back home. If it’s a club event or a party ask who else’s coming.
Figure out who you can hitch a ride with. Of course, do ensure that the people you’re arranging your rides with aren’t drinking themselves.
Alternatively, you can also plan the way you’re going to be drinking. Be sure to include a lot of water in your drinks, to keep it minimal, and to stop drinking at least ninety to one hundred and twenty minutes before you leave.
If you still don’t feel sober, don’t drive!
3. Appoint a Designated Driver
This is perhaps one of the best things you can do to prevent yourself from driving drunk. If you and your friends have a habit of heading out for a bunch of drinks, perhaps each of you can take turns in being the designated driver.
Look on the plus side, it’s always fun to be the only sober observer amongst a bunch of drunk friends!
If you already have a friend who doesn’t drink, you could simply request them to drive you around. Be sure to pay for their dinner, in return though!
4. Call a Cab or Use Public Transport
Call for a cab. Is a cab too expensive? Take the bus!
Or, take the subway.
You’ve got plenty of options to choose from, and they’re all better than the alternative – driving while drunk!
Don’t worry about public perception, if anything they should respect the fact that you’re making the responsible choice of not engaging in intoxicated driving.
5. Don’t Drive to the Party
If you know you’re going to be drinking, just don’t drive yourself to the venue. That way there’s just no way for you to drive back home. You’ll be forced into finding an alternative.
Don’t worry, it’s alright to leave your car behind. There are plenty of ways to go about the city. Public transport, shared cabs, and or even calling a friend to pick you up.
If you still can’t wrap your head around public transport, there’s still plenty of options left for you. Since you know you won’t have your car, you can go back to option number 2 and figure out a plan for you to get back.
And if you still don’t…
6. Spend the Night at a Nearby Hotel
You don’t have to go home that very night. If you’re not up to it, and you simply can’t find an alternative, just find a way to spend the night where you are or somewhere close to it.
If you’re at someone’s house, simply ask to spend the night. If that feels too awkward, and you don’t know the person well enough to ask for a favor, look around for nearby hotels you can stay at. Yes, it’s a little bit expensive, but it’s definitely better than driving back with a fuzzy brain.
Once again, try and plan this by looking out for places to stay in advance.
7. Have a Back-Up Plan for When Things Go Wrong
Sometimes, no matter how hard you try or plan, things don’t work out. In circumstances like these, it’s important to have a back-up plan. A friend you can call to pick you up, or even a lawyer, especially if drunk driving is something you struggle with.
Having a lawyer on call is a good idea, especially for these reasons. It could save you unnecessary fines, unwarranted arrest and get you out of more uncomfortable situations.
Talk to Your Friends About the Various Ways to Prevent Drunk Driving
One of the best ways to prevent drunk driving is for the people you hang out with, to collectively decide that drunk driving is unacceptable. That way you can hold each other accountable and ensure safe and responsible behavior when you hang out.
Make it a point to discuss this with your friends and colleagues, no matter how hard the conversation is.
Like what you read? Explore our lifestyle section for more informative content on the things you love!