Reducing and preventing drunk driving should rank near the top of everyone’s list. While laws across the nation have made it illegal to drink and drive with a BAC of 0.08 percent or higher, people still do it. In addition, people under 21 have “zero tolerance” laws that have made it illegal for anyone to drive with a measurable amount of alcohol in the system. These laws have maintained the legal drinking age at 21 across all 50 states, and implementing these laws have saved thousands of lives every year since they were first set in place.
Telling the Stories of the Victims
Tell the stories of those directly impacted by drinking and driving, and you will raise awareness of drinking and driving in a way that people can connect with. Alexis McKinney, for example, had a 16th birthday coming up within the year. She had much to look forward to like every 16-year-old her age. Alexis, along with her sister, were dating two guys who were brothers. They went to hang out, and her mother, Sherry McKinnis, told them to return before 11 pm. The clock struck 11:30 pm and Alexis and her sister had still not returned. She went to the home of the other mother, and she learned how they still were not home. While at the mother’s home, the two received a phone call that said the boys had been involved in a crash. Alexis had never been mentioned. When the cops arrived, she learned how Alexis had been ejected from the vehicle when her boyfriend—under the influence of drugs and alcohol—crashed the vehicle. Alexis died instantly. The consequences of drunk driving can be steep.
These dangers exist, but unfortunately, people don’t heed the warning until it’s too late to do something about it.
Raising Drunk Driving Awareness at the Bar?
You hear the concept and almost believe it sounds like the beginning of a joke, but if you want to have a positive impact, you have to start with the problem at its source. The Dori Slosberg Foundation, a foundation named for one of the five teens kills in a deadly crash in Palm Beach County, was one of the most notorious highway wrecks around, and they held a fundraiser at the Blue Martini Lounge in the Center Mall in Boca Raton. This became an opportunity for the foundation to reach out to the adults who may have one day otherwise drive home drunk. Some have argued that it sent mixed messages, but if you want to stop drunk driving from happening, you have to take it to the people who have a higher likelihood of doing it. Bring home the point in the bar that people should drink responsibly and have a designated driver to help them.
Learn to Recognize the Signs and Symptoms of Drunk Drivers
Training people to understand the symptoms and signs that someone has chosen to drive drunk can make a huge difference. In this way, you can spot the dangers on the road, and you can call it into the police. These safety programs that train people to help keep everyone on the road safe because if it doesn’t get called in, it eventually leads to negative consequences. You could save someone’s life.
Understand the Statistics: They’re Alarming
Based on information from MADD, over 1.41 million drivers were arrested in 2000 because of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. That’s a huge problem. In addition, someone dies in an accident with a drunk driver every 53 minutes. In fact, in 2016, 10,497 people died as a result of a drunk driver.
One of the most visible ways that law enforcement has chosen to educate the public on drunken driving has been through DUI checkpoints throughout the year. This helps raise awareness about the problem with drunk driving. Some people have heard this misguided myth that responsible drinkers don’t get arrested for a DUI. This implies that someone who has drunk moderate levels of alcohol can still drive a car safely. However, the staggering amount of evidence around this shows that injuries and crash fatalities from alcohol happen every year, and you don’t have any such thing as “responsible drinking.”