Putting on your seatbelt before putting the keys in the ignition is something that becomes second nature to drivers, but when celebrating over the holidays, it is important to think twice before getting behind the wheel.
Communications Sgt. for DPS, Sgt. Justin Baker, says, “during the holiday seasons we do have people celebrating with alcohol, and, so of course, with the increase in consumption of alcohol and increased level of traffic on the roadway, combine the two, we are probably going to go up on our DWI arrests.”
You can avoid a DWI by communicating with your friends a safe ride home and sticking to that plan.
“Make sure that’s one of the first contacts in your phone, and, again, make sure that we have that plan that that is the company we are going to use for getting home safely,” says Baker.
It is important to have a back up plan, even if that means calling a family member.
“It might be embarrassing, but it is a lot better than making that phone call from a jail, or worse, that you were just involved in a crash and someone was injured,” says Baker.
Although you might feel safe at the bar, arrests for being under the influence don’t just happen behind the wheel.
“If you are too impaired in that public place and you are putting yourself and others in danger, and if you don’t find that safe ride home than there can still be an arrest for public intoxication,” says Baker.
If you see somebody on the road that might be drunk driving, it is still important that you report it.
“Call immediately, call 9-1-1. Get a good description of that vehicle, get a good description of the license, and make that phone call and we will get out there as fast as we can,” says Baker.
Taking alcohol along with prescription medication can also inhibit your judgment, so it is really important to communicate with a designated driver, and stick to the plan.
Have a safe New Year.