by Liz Spear
Here are safety tips from the Automobile Club of Southern California to help keep motorists and others safe whenever alcohol is available:
- Always plan ahead to designate a non-drinking driver before any party or celebration begins.
- At social events, designate non-drinking drivers who can get everyone home safely.
- Never serve alcohol to those under age 21.
- Never ride as a passenger in a car driven by someone who was drinking alcohol – even after one drink.
- Call a friend or family member for a ride home if you’ve been drinking.
- Keep a cab company telephone number in your cell phone and wallet so you can call for a ride home.
- As a party host, offer non-alcoholic drink alternatives and provide a gift to guests who volunteer to be designated drivers; provide overnight accommodations to guests who’ve been drinking.
- Take the car keys away from friends and relatives who have had too much to drink.
- If you encounter an impaired driver on the road, keep a safe distance and ask a passenger to call 911 (or pull over to a safe location to make the call yourself).
- Remember: prescription, over-the-counter medications and illegal drugs also can impair your ability to drive safely.
Facts about impaired driving are available on PreventDUI.AAA.com, which also offers transportation alternatives and expert advice. The Auto Club encourages drivers to Take the Pledge to drive drug and alcohol-free.