The holiday season is typically a time of good cheer in which your family members and loved ones gather to spend time together, sharing laughter and fun. However, all too often such gatherings can end in tragedy when someone attempts to drive home drunk from a holiday party. Nearly 200 people sustained an injury, and over 80 lost their lives, in the 2,321 alcohol-related crashes in Texas during the 2016 holiday season.
The outlook may be grim for drivers who inadvertently cause such crashes while under the influence. Even for those who escape the collision without injury, the consequences of a DUI conviction can be severe, including loss of driver’s license and up to $17,000 in fines.
Fortunately, avoiding DUI and the accidents that can follow may be as simple as planning ahead to prevent yourself or a loved one from getting behind the wheel after consuming alcohol.
A little is too much
People who do not make plans beforehand often end up choosing the “least drunk” person in the group as the designated driver. However, alcohol impairment can occur from any amount of alcohol, even if you have not reached the legal limit for blood alcohol concentration.
Therefore, it is better that the designated driver be completely sober, with no alcohol in his or her system whatsoever. If you are part of a group of party-goers, you should discuss the matter together and reach a decision before the party.
Other options may be available
A designated driver is only one possible option. Your drunk driving prevention plan may include other alternatives, such as hiring a ride from a transportation service. Possible options include the following:
- Public transit
- Ride-sharing services
- Rented limo
In certain Texas communities, some of these options may be unavailable. Therefore, it is important to be aware of what your community does or does not offer and take this into consideration when planning.
Your plan may not necessarily include transportation alternatives at all. It may be possible for you to spend the night at the site of the party, especially if it takes place in a hotel or in the home of a family member or close friend.