Drunk driving is still unfortunately a big issue that we deal with all year long. And during the time between Christmas and New Year’s, the number of fatalities that result from alcohol-related accidents rises to 34 percent. 

New Year’s Eve specifically has a historically high amount of accidents involving inebriated drivers. In 2015, more than 42 percent of traffic accidents on New Year’s Eve were a result of drinking and driving.  

It comes down to a variety of factors. One probable cause for the increase in DUI related accidents is that the holiday season, especially New Year’s Eve, is about celebration. Those who don’t drink regularly are more likely to have one or two drinks, then get in a car and drive unaware of their low-tolerance and experience a higher level of inebriation than they’re conscious of.

Why Do So Many People Drive Drink During the Holiday Season?

Another likely cause for the increase in drunk driving is overindulgence at holiday parties. Those who drink year-round drink more than they usually will in celebration. Yet they fail to recognize how drunk they actually are, and choose to step behind the wheel. 

How to Celebrate 2017 Responsibly

We need to lessen the amount of drunk drivers on the road this New Year’s Eve. There are so many alternatives to driving drunk, I cannot stress that enough. If you have intention of attending a New Year’s Eve party and consuming alcohol while there, consider your options. Before you even leave your house that night, have a plan. Figure out how you’re going to get home, and have a backup plan.

Appoint a Designated Driver

I know being the DD is everyone’s least favorite thing to do. But sometimes you have to do it, especially if it means you could be saving lives. Who says that you need alcohol to ring in the new year? Make one of these non-alcoholic drinks, and celebrate just like you would if you were drinking. You’ll still be having fun, trust me.

If you’re going to a bar or club this NYE, be sure to mention that you’re your party’s designated driver. Often, many bars will offer you free non-alcoholic beverages in return for your “service.”

Sober Rides

Thanks to the wide variety of taxis and ride services such as Uber and Lyft, not having a DD is no longer an “excuse” to drive drunk. If you need to get home on NYE, call a ride service (head's up they may be pricey especially on New Year’s).

AAA, among many other police departments and insurance companies have also established free sober ride programs on New Year’s Eve to reduce the number of drunk drivers on the road. Please check to see what free ride services are available in your area.

Public Transportation

Many towns and cities, in order to reduce the risk of drunk driving on NYE, have established bus and metro lines that will run throughout their cities in the night through the early hours of the morning. Check with your local public transportation department to see what options are available.

Just Don’t Drive Drunk

“If your brain was donated to science, science would return it."

Have a fun, and safe New Year's Eve. Drink responsibly.