While it is the season to eat, drink and be merry, many people get caught up in the pressures of the holiday and don’t think about what they’re doing when they get behind the wheel of their cars after having too many drinks. Because their judgment is impaired, they think they can handle it, which is why there are so many DUI cases. All around the country, a pattern emerges just before Thanksgiving that leads up into the Christmas and New Year season. In fact, more DUI arrests occur during the holidays than at any other. My deputies made 471 DUI arrests in 2010, twenty of those arrested were juveniles. Between Nov. 23, 2010 and Jan. 3, 2011, law enforcement agencies across Colorado arrested 1,556 people for impaired driving; 444 people started out the New Year with a DUI.
It doesn’t take much to make the holiday safer for everyone and it starts with keeping the consumption of alcohol down to a minimum during the holiday season. If you choose drink or serve alcohol during your holiday festivities, here are a few tips for a safer holiday season:
Plain and simple, drinking and driving is simply not an option, so designate a driver before you attend a party.
Don’t lose sight of the meaning of the holiday. Yes, it’s a time for having fun but the primary purpose of the party is not to get drunk.
If you’re going to drink, set your drink limit before getting to the party and then make sure you stick to your decision.
Drinking is your responsibility and is always a choice; stop yourself before you’ve gone too far.
Make sure the holiday season is peaceful. If you drink, do so in moderation. Choose a designated driver and encourage your friends to do the same. Keep uppermost in your mind the reason we celebrate during the holiday season and don’t use it as an excuse to get drunk. The consequences are too severe. Besides, you don’t want to become a holiday statistic!