Ringing in a New Year is exciting! To keep it fun, here are a few safety tips:
You probably already know that New Year’s Eve is one of the most dangerous times to drive. The combination of intoxication and potentially hazardous weather increases the risk. The best way to avoid problems is not to drive at all – take a taxi, Uber or Lyft. That way you don’t run the risk of making a bad decision about driving because you are intoxicated, or place your host or hostess in the awkward situation of having to take your keys away.
If you do drive, either limit your alcohol consumption or let a designated non drinking friend drive you home.
What are the risks of driving intoxicated?
- Being pulled over by a policeman for drunk driving. There are usually more police out on New Year’s than any other night of the year. No one wants a ticket for drunk driving, and for an attorney in Indiana, where I practice law, it would also mean disciplinary action.
- You are in a collision, causing injury to yourself and others. Alcohol impairs judgment, not only in the traditional ways but now also may cause you to think you can text and talk on the phone. When you text or talk while drunk and driving, you exponentially increase your risk of an accident. Drunk driving accidents can be some of the most tragic, because they involve higher speeds, driving on the wrong side of the road, etc.
Hosts and Hostesses of Parties
If you are entertaining, please make sure that your intoxicated guests either take a taxi, Uber, or Lyft, stay overnight with you, or have a non-impaired friend drive them home. This advice applies whether you are hosting a cocktail party that starts in the late afternoon or a party that lasts into the next morning. Remember that it will be dark in Indianapolis starting at 5:30 p.m., which further increases the risk for drunk drivers.
As an attorney I need to advise you that allowing your guests to drive intoxicated could even result in your liability if they are in a crash because you allowed them to drink too much.
It is best to watch fireworks on TV, and it goes without saying that you should not shoot guns off at midnight. Lock any guns up. In 2017 a San Leandro, California woman was injured by random celebratory gunfire on New Year’s Eve.
Beware. You may be surprised to learn that New Year’s Eve and the following day are both very dangerous statistically for pedestrians. This is because of the number of drunk drivers on the road. Impaired drivers either don’t see pedestrians at all, or don’t react quickly enough to avoid hitting them.
Have a very happy new year, and please stay safe!