Thanksgiving and Christmas are favorite times to spend quality time with family and friends. These celebrations often involve drinking alcohol, which could have fatal consequences. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration revealed that 10,265 people died in 2015 in drunk driving crashes. That’s one death every 51 minutes.
Holiday celebrations don’t have to end in tragedy. Here are a few tips for smart planning.
- Before heading out the door, decide whether you’ll drink or you’ll drive — you can’t do both.
- If you plan to drive, commit to staying sober.
- If you plan to drink, designate a sober driver, or use a taxi or ride-sharing app (Uber or Lyft).
- If you see a driver on the road who you suspect is impaired, pull over to a safe spot and call 911.
- If you see people who are about to drive while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely.
- If you serve alcohol, be a responsible host. Offer food and non-alcoholic beverages. It takes 40 minutes or longer for alcohol from one drink to be absorbed.
- Take note of who’s coming, who drinks and who drives. Make sure all of your guests designate their sober drivers in advance, or help arrange ride-sharing with
- other sober drivers.
- Stop serving alcohol at least an hour before your guests start to leave for home.
- Take the keys away from anyone who might drive while impaired.
- Consider serving non-alcoholic drink options like the recipe shown below.
3 c pineapple juice, chilled
3 c cranberry juice cocktail, chilled
3 c ginger ale
1/2 c cranberries
1/2 lime, sliced
In a large pitcher, stir together juices and ginger ale. Add lime, cranberries and ice. Stir gently. Enjoy!
— Tiffany Wright, AAA Public Relations Manager
(Go Magazine Nov/Dec 2017)