Impaired driving is a life-and-death issue all year around. But it’s never more so than during the holiday season when many holiday celebrations involve alcohol consumption. And one of the times alcohol consumption is a big problem on the road is around New Year’s. Today’s Advisor gives you tips for wellness training on this subject.
We may not want to think of the dangers of drunk and drugged driving during this festive season, because we want to be full of joy and goodwill, but we have to be realistic in order to enjoy the season safely. Consider the statistics listed under “Why It Matters.”
Happy New Year!
If you’re throwing a New Year’s eve or New Year’s Day party this year, consider serving this fruity nonalcoholic beverage at your holiday bash:
Pomegranate Ginger Spritzer
(Source: SparkRecipes – http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/)
Pomegranate Juice, 16 oz bottle
Ginger Ale, 12 oz bottle
Juice of 2 limes
Serve chilled in wine goblets. Serves 4.
If you are serving alcohol, be a responsible party host by following this advice from The National Commission Against Drunk Driving (NCADD):
- Urge your guests to designate a driver ahead of time.
- Collect each guest’s keys on arrival. Know the condition of your guests before returning their keys at the end of the party.
- Plan activities so that the focus isn’t just on drinking.
- Serve a variety of foods and include nonalcoholic beverages.
- If serving a punch containing alcohol, mix with a noncarbonated base like a fruit juice. Carbonated bases speed up the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream.
- Designate one person to serve as the bartender. This will help control the number of drinks and the amount of alcohol in each drink.
- Stop serving alcohol 60 to 90 minutes before the party’s over. Bring out dessert, coffee, and other nonalcoholic drinks.
- Arrange a ride home for guests who’ve overindulged or invite them to spend the night.
- Get Home Safely
- If you’re going to drink at New Year’s celebrations that someone else is hosting, take these precautions to get home safely:
- Designate a driver ahead of time. Remember, a designated driver is a nondrinking driver.
- Take a cab or public transportation.
- Make a reservation and spend the night.
- Consume food, sip your drinks, and alternate with nonalcoholic beverages.
- Ask your server about a ride home if you’ve been drinking to the point of impairment.
Why It Matters
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, alcohol use is involved in 40 percent of all fatal motor vehicle crashes.
The NCADD reports that on an average day, 46 people die in alcohol-related crashes.
It’s estimated that 3 in every 10 Americans will be involved in an impaired-driving-related crash some time in their life.
Alcohol involvement in vehicle crashes is highest at night (9 p.m. to 6 a.m.) and on weekends and holidays.
Americans are injured and killed on the road in record numbers during the holiday season, largely because of impaired driving.
According to NCADD, drunk driving costs Americans more than $50 billion each year in economic losses.