Everybody needs to let loose once in a while. After working, attending classes, parenting, or all of the above for the whole week, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to unwind and party on the weekend. However, if we aren’t careful, it’s very easy for that great time with friends to lead to bad and even harmful decisions. When you or someone you know decides to get behind the wheel while intoxicated, that’s when the situation is no longer okay. That’s why it’s imperative that whenever you party, you have a plan for safe, sober transportation. It can save lives.
To ensure that you have a willing designated driver or other means of safe transportation, your best bet is to plan in advance. As soon as you know that you’ll be drinking, your next move should be to figure out how you and your friends will be getting home. Below, we’ll discuss a few of the ways you can make sure that no one needs to put themselves at risk for an accident or DUI once the partying is finished.
1. Create an Alternating System
If there’s a group of people that you’re partying with on a regular basis, consider creating a system in which you all take turns being the designated driver. That way, if everyone in the group enjoys drinking, you can ensure that no one is having to miss out on it more often than anyone else. Nobody in your friend group will be able to argue with the system’s fairness, and you’ll always know ahead of time who is getting everyone home. If you’re partying in a larger group, you may need to have two people scheduled at a time, but figuring out the specific logistics shouldn’t be overly difficult. You’ll have to trust in the honor system to effectively utilize this method, so make sure you only do so with people that you know well and trust. There may be times when the person who’s scheduled to drive doesn’t attend the party; in that case, you can ask for fill-in volunteers or move to the next person in line. Of course, the person who was originally scheduled will still need to step up for the next night out!
2. Use a Rideshare Service
If you and your friends have one of the many affordable rideshare apps available on your phones, there’s no reason that anyone should feel the need to drive while intoxicated. The popular rideshare services have numerous drivers in every major area of the country. Regardless of whose house or which bar you’re partying at, you can promptly have a driver arriving to pick you and your friends up with only a few taps. To keep things fair and everyone happy, either split the cost of the service or take turns paying for it.
3. Incentivize Designated Driving
In most cases, you and your friends would probably rather have a few drinks at the party than stay sober and be the chauffeur. However, for most people, a modest payment can quickly change that mindset. Before the party really gets going, offer a monetary incentive for anyone willing to be a designated driver at the end of the night. One great way to do so is to have the partygoers each contribute a few dollars toward the cause. More often than not, you’ll have several people willing to refrain from drinking and get everyone home safely.
4. Limit Drinking at the Party
This method isn’t for everyone, as some people really enjoy getting drunk. However, if you and the people you party with aren’t as focused on the alcohol consumption aspect of the experience, keeping the drinking to a minimum may be a viable strategy. If you ensure that no one at the party has more than a drink or two, everyone should be sober enough to drive safely at the end of the night. If you go this route, it’s imperative that everyone attending the party knows about it in advance, or you may face some unhappy resistance to the plan.
5. Have a Plan B on Call
Oftentimes, when people make the mistake of driving drunk, they forget that they have loved ones who care deeply about their safety. If they had simply made a phone call asking a friend or family member for a ride, they could have avoided a dangerous error. There’s a good chance you and your friends have people in your life who would be willing to help get you home safely. Before you party, consider making an arrangement with a friend, parent, or another family member who would be willing to pick you and your friends up at the end of the night. That way, if your other designated driver plans fall through, you have a safe and reliable option that’s only a phone call away.
In the moment, drunk driving may seem like it’s no big deal. Even after having four or five drinks, you or your friends may feel like you’re completely fine to get behind the wheel. However, it simply isn’t worth it. If not for your own safety and the wellbeing of your family, consider the many other people on the road that you’d be putting at risk with such a decision. There are many ways you can go about avoiding that mistake, and it doesn’t matter which one you choose. What matters is that you put a high priority on you and your friends getting home safely. Should you ever find yourself dealing with an injury from an automobile accident in the Westport, IL area, reach out to Jeremy M. Wang Law & Associates, LLC. You could be entitled to significant compensation for what you’ve been through, and they’ll work hard to ensure that you receive it.