5 Ways to Stop Friends From Drinking and Driving
According to the CDC, on average 29 people per day die in America from drinking and driving. While progress has been made, and people may be more aware on the dangers of drinking and driving, there is no getting around the fact that most people have to be more responsible when it comes to drinking.
While it’s true that each of us has to take responsibility for our own actions, it’s also true that we need to look out for each other. If you’re drinking with your friends, and you’re worried they might try to drive home drunk, here are some things you can do to prevent friends from drinking and driving.
#1: Be the Designated Driver
For some, being the designated driver feels like giving up your night so friends can have all the fun. While being the responsible one may feel like a burden, the alternative is much worse. If your friends are depending on someone to get them home safe, wouldn’t you want it to be you?
Besides, next time you all go out for a night on the town, it can be their turn to take up the mantle. Share and share alike makes everyone safer.
#2: Call a Cab
This one may be obvious for some, it is even listed on the Court Info site for the state of California, and it’s directed at teens who find themselves in a situation where they’re too impaired to drive. In the past this might not have been an option in smaller towns or more rural areas, but thanks to the spread of the gig culture and competing apps like Uber and Lyft, you can get a ride home.
While no one wants to part with a cab fee, the cost of a DUI is significantly higher. And the cost of an accident even more so.
#3: Take Public Transportation
While this one isn’t an option for every town and city, if there’s a bus or a train that can get you where you need to go, then consider taking that option for your night out. As the Telegraph points out, one of the best ways to avoid the temptation to drink and drive is to remove the option to do so from the evening.
Things can still go wrong with public transportation. You can miss your stop, be late, or just end up getting confused, but those mistakes are neither as expensive, nor as potentially fatal, as what can go wrong when you drink and drive.
#4: Talk About it
Communication is the key to solving a lot of your problems, particularly in a friend group. If you have a problem, or you need one of your friends to not drink and drive, then talking about it can usually help you make progress. Being candid with your friends, and making sure they know you’re serious about them not driving under the influence can have a big effect according to Safeco.
Sometimes just having that heart-to-heart can be enough to let your friends know you’re there for them, and that you’d rather get a late-night call, or let them stay at your place for the evening than have them attempt to drive home after drinking.
#5: Make Sure You Have Back-Up Options
So what happens if your friend is too drunk to drive, and you’re too drunk to drive? There’s no cab service in your area, and no public transportation where you’re going?
That’s when you have to rely on the rest of your friends to step up and help.
Never be too afraid, or too proud, to ask your other friends or family for help. Take some time, and put together a list of people you can call if you need to. If necessary, talk to them before you go out to be sure they’re available to lend a hand if you need it.