When friends have plans to drink during a night out, it is a good idea to have someone as the designated driver. This person agrees not to drink or partake of any drugs so they can drive everyone safely home at the end of the night.
According to DesignatedDriving.net, designated driving became popular in the 1980s and has saved hundreds of thousands of lives since then.
Over four decades later, designated driving still works
In the first four years of the campaign, drunk driving fatalities decreased by 24%, then by 30% over six years. The numbers also show that drivers understand the importance of having a designated driver, with more than 73 million Americans reporting that they either served as a designated driver or drove home with one at one point.
Choosing the right designated driver
The designated driver must keep their blood alcohol content under a certain level to be considered sober. Groups should pick someone who has automobile insurance and a valid license. Because the temptation will still be there to drink, it is important to pick someone who takes the responsibility seriously.
Before starting the night, it is also important to have a plan. Friends should know who has the keys, who is driving and where a meeting place is. If the designated driver is chosen after the drinking starts, decision-making is impaired, and the wrong choice may be made. Alcohol impairs alertness, balance, reaction time, judgment, coordination and the ability to act quickly. Choosing a designated driver before drinking can prevent drunk driving accidents and tickets, which may result in fines, penalties and even jail time.