Alternatives to drinking and driving….and why you need them
For many people, getting together with friends and family to celebrate and have a few drinks is pretty common. Whether the celebration is for New Year’s Eve, Christmas, birthdays. Anniversary’s or just days that end in the letter “y”, they need to realize planning should be in the cards before the celebration begins. It’s actually pretty easy to do. You just have to do it.
The easiest way to avoid driving after drinking is to leave your vehicle at home. No temptation to drive happens now. There seems to be many excuses though as to why they want to drive to and from; it’s convenient, no money for cabs, too far to walk, etc. Sorry, but when you’re risking lives of you, your passengers and other road users, convenience should never be one of the top reasons to drive after drinking. So let’s come up with a solid plan.
It doesn’t matter which jurisdiction you live in, alcohol related deaths happen far too often. I seriously doubt the individuals who drive while under the influence of alcohol never knew of the consequences, never knew the laws and never knew how alcohol can affect their abilities to make driving-related choices. No one is that naive. Or are they?
I’ve heard people having conversations stating they have good reactions after drinking. Seriously? How would you know that since you’re already impaired from alcohol when you’re making that conclusion? It’s like someone saying they don’t snore when they sleep. You’re sleeping, so how would you know! Alcohol affects your judgement, reactions and decision-making abilities. All impairments do this. A standard dictionary definition of impairment means: “To make worse by lessening strength, value, quantity or quality. To damage.” Canada has had a drinking and driving law in place for almost 100 years. How many more years will it take for drivers to realize it’s not only illegal, but dangerous?
In Canada and the United States, roughly one third of all traffic related fatalities involve alcohol. http://nationalpost.com/news/canada/canadas-drunk-driving-death-rate-worst-among-wealthy-countries-u-s-study-finds. But there doesn’t have to be a fatality for impaired driving to be devastating. Personal injury happens to thousands in many jurisdictions. So, what are your options besides killing and/or injuring yourselves or others, impacting family and friends for your actions just because you wanted to have a good time and for having a criminal record after being charged?
Besides leaving your vehicle at home, there are other options to avoid driving after drinking. Bring a designated driver with you. Someone who won’t be drinking who can drive after at the end of the evening. No issues there. You could also stay the night at your friend or family member’s home where you were drinking. No issue there either. Call a friend or family member to come and get you.
There are businesses within our society that will drive you and your vehicle home. They charge a minimal fee but their service is worth it. The next day, you’re home and so is your vehicle. However, you do need to remember that you may still be impaired by alcohol the morning after. What appears to be a hangover is really impairment. If you were having quite a few drinks, the best thing is to avoid driving altogether until well into the next day.
Have a good time, but make the decision to avoid driving after drinking before you take that first drink. There are simple decisions you can make. That’s when you’re making sober, logical decisions.