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Safety Nugget Week of October 26 - Driving Safely, Avoid Drunk Driving< Back to Blog

Oct 26, 2015
By: C. Wang
Categories: Safety

Drive safely, never ever drunk driving.

A woman suspected of drunken driving crashed a car into a crowd of spectators at Oklahoma State University's homecoming parade, killing four people -- including a 2-year-old -- authorities in Stillwater said Saturday.

Every day in America, 28 people die as a result of drunk driving crashes. In 2013, 10,076 people died in drunk driving crashes - one every 52 minutes - and 290,000 were injured in drunk driving crashes.  Car crashes are the leading cause of death for teens, and about a quarter of those crashes involve an underage drinking driver.

Safety nugget to prevent drinking and driving:

When Drinking Alcohol

  • Be responsible.
  • Choose a designated driver. Decide who's going to be doing the driving before you go out, and make sure that person doesn't drink any alcoholic beverages.
  • Call a taxi. Sometimes even the designated driver slips. If nobody in your group is sober, take alternate transportation. Cab, train, bus, horse and buggy – anything's better than getting in the car with a drunk driver.
  • Hide keys. Don't be afraid to take someone's car keys. If the person gets angry, it's probably proof you're doing the right thing.

When Throwing a Party

  • Offer non-alcoholic beverages. Water, juice, soda pop – give your guests plenty of alternatives. And never pressure guests to drink alcohol.
  • Stop serving alcohol well before the party ends. Give your guests an extra hour or two without alcohol before they head out the door.
  • Arrange alternate transportation. Pay attention to your guests' alcohol intake and behavior. If someone has had a lot to drink or seems even the slightest bit tipsy, call a cab or set up a ride with a sober driver.

Detecting Drunk Drivers

Law enforcement officials say there are several signs associated with drunk driving:

  • Making wide turns
  • Weaving, swerving, drifting, or straddling the center line
  • Almost striking an object or vehicle
  • Driving on the wrong side of the road
  • Stopping without cause
  • Braking erratically
  • Responding slowly to traffic signals
  • Turning abruptly or illegally
  • Driving after dark with headlights off

Keeping these things in mind can help you avoid a dangerous situation. If you spot what you think is an impaired driver, keep a safe distance and call 9-1-1. Do not attempt to stop the vehicle yourself.

Drive safely; avoid drunk driving for yourself, your family, and your friends. Hopefully the tragedy will never happen again.

Sources:

  1. Driving safety tips to avoid an accident. http://www.nationwide.com/driving-safety-tips.jsp
  2. Safety and driving tips. http://www.dmv.org/how-to-guides/safety-and-driving.php
  3. Roadway safety tips. http://www.mhd.state.ma.us/safetytips/DrunkDriving.asp
  4. Tips to prevent drinking and driving. https://learningcenter.statefarm.com/safety-2/auto-2/tips-to-prevent-drinking-and-driving/
  5. City of Stillwater.....Homecoming Parade Accident

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