Five Steps to Help Prevent Drunk Driving Accidents

Help Keep Our Roadways Safe!

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), three out of every ten Americans will be involved in an alcohol-related crash at some time in their lives. Below are five steps each of us can take to reduce the risk of drunk driving accidents and make our roadways safer for ourselves and our loved ones.

#1: Know the Facts.

Alcohol-impaired driving is an issue that affects Everyone on the road — even those who NEVER drink and drive. So know the facts and understand the risks. On average, someone is killed by a drunk driver every 45 minutes. These fatalities are even more devastating because they are often 100% avoidable.

#2: Understand the Differences in Blood Alcohol Concentration levels (BAC), and how they affect driving ability.

BAC is the amount of alcohol in a person’s body as measured by the weight of the alcohol in a certain volume of blood. According to the NHTSA, an individual’s BAC rises based on a number of factors:

  • The number of drinks. The more you drink, the higher the BAC.
  • How fast you drink. When alcohol is consumed quickly, you will reach a higher BAC than when it is consumed over a longer period of time.
  • Your gender. Women generally have less water and more body fat per pound of body weight than men. Alcohol does not go into fat cells as easily as other cells, so more alcohol remains in the blood of women.
  • Your weight. The more you weigh, the more water is present in your body. This water dilutes the alcohol and lowers the BAC. 
  • Food in your stomach. Alcohol is absorbed directly through the walls of the stomach and the small intestine, goes into the bloodstream, and travels throughout the body and to the brain. Absorption will be slowed if you’ve had something to eat.

#3:Be a Good Role Model.

Many studies have shown that even small amounts of alcohol can impair a person’s ability to drive. Even if you are only an occasional social drinker, make the decision to NEVER mix drinking and driving. Your behavior will set an example for family members, friends and neighbors to follow. If you do drink, be certain to choose a non-drinking friend as a designated driver, take a taxi, or ask ahead of time if you can stay over at your host’s house. (Also note: your community may have a Safe Rides program that will give you a free ride home.) 

#4:Be a Responsible Host.

Never allow guests to drive home impaired. Take away their keys and call them a cab, or let them spend the night. Always have plenty of food and non-alcoholic drinks available.

#5: Report DUI Drivers.

State officials have made a call to all citizens to report any potential drunk drivers to local authorities by calling 911 or your local police. 

 

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