The holiday season lasts for several months, yet it’s gone in the blink of an eye. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hannukah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa, all speed by, and all of a sudden, it’s time to celebrate New Year’s Eve again. It’s nice to celebrate with friends and family. At the same time, it’s essential to do so responsibly. Putting caution on the back burner can result in a DUI in a best-case scenario or a catastrophic car accident in the worst of cases. So, what can you do to ensure safe driving on New Year’s Eve?
5 Tips for Safe Driving on New Year’s Eve
There are several things you can do to ensure your safety, the safety of your loved ones, and the wellbeing of other families on the road. All of them require a little bit of planning and are relatively easy.
1. Make sure your car is in top shape
New Year’s Eve is not the time to find out that one of your brake lights isn’t working, or that your tires are threadbare. Most auto repair shops will be closed, and you don’t want to increase your risk of an accident on a night with so many people driving under the influence.
2. Surrender your car keys
If you’re not sure how much you’re going to drink, give your car keys to the host or someone else in your group of friends for safekeeping, under directions that if you’re too drunk to drive by the end of the night, you won’t get them back. It’s much better to have someone else judge your soberness than to try to gauge on your own whether you feel fine enough to drive.
3. Have a designated driver
While this may sound like an onerous role for some people, here’s some sobering news — every 50 minutes, someone in the United States dies in a car accident. And that’s on a regular day. The odds skyrocket on New Year’s Eve. Having a designated driver is easier for groups where someone doesn’t drink or if you’re celebrating with your children. If you’re in neither category, move on to the following tip.
4. Rely on ridesharing services
It really is that simple. While Uber or Lyft may get pricier on holidays or in certain parts of the city, getting pulled over for driving under the influence (DUI) will set you back up to $1,000 for a first conviction — and that’s not counting the money you’ll have to pay for an attorney and for extra car insurance costs.
5. Be extra vigilant while driving
Not everyone drinks during New Year’s Eve. If you’re one of them, you should still be vigilant about other motorists. Keep enough distance between your car and the vehicle in front of you. Do not listen to music at high volumes. Pay attention to signs that there may be a drunk driver — such as swerving, straddling lanes, or passing cars narrowly. Keep your distance and report them to 911. It’s much better to be that person than to read in the papers the next morning that there was a fatality you could’ve prevented.
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Disclaimer: This blog is for informational purposes only and does not create an attorney/client relationship.