So your friend invited you to a social event, and you’re expecting alcoholic beverages to be served.

You may think, “There’s nothing harmful in a bottle of cold beer, or a glass of champagne.” Yes, everyone has the freedom to consume and enjoy these types of beverages. However, if you intend to drive your vehicle after drinking alcohol, then this is a different story.

Every driver is aware that drinking and then driving is a dangerous combination, and should be avoided at all costs.

First of all, drunk driving is against the law, and alcohol consumption makes driving risky on public roads. Even a minimal amount of alcohol can have various effects on the brain and body. Physiological effects include euphoria, impaired judgment and coordination, and more. Other alarming effects of alcohol intoxication are exhilaration, perplexity, coma, and even death. Everyone, from teens to adult drinkers, must be encouraged to avoid drunk driving. But how?

1. Be a responsible drinker

Some commercials for alcoholic beverages, such as beer and wine, end with a friendly prompt or reminder to “drink moderately” or “drink responsibly.” You, especially as a driver, should follow this advice.

If you attend parties or social functions that serve alcoholic beverages, then make sure to be responsible and formulate transportation plans ahead of time. The best way to avoid drinking at a party is self-discipline. However, some friends or colleagues can be too convincing and persuade you to have a drink. So, one sip may lead to a glass, and one glass may lead to more bottles. Before you know it, you are highly intoxicated and drunk.

One way to plan ahead is calling someone you trust or a taxi to drive you home. If you live far from the venue, prepare arrangements such as staying with a friend or relative who lives nearby.

2. Ask someone to put your keys out of sight

If you are attending a social function, ask a trusting person you know to hide your car keys when you start drinking. That person will be helping you a great deal, they could prevent you from getting charged with a DUI. Most importantly, he or she can stop you from getting involved in a car accident that may result in injuries or even death for yourself or others.

In case it is your friend who is getting drunk, do not think twice about hiding their car keys as well. A person who has had a few drinks may become aggressive. So, one way to approach him/her is by being calm and patient and offering them other options for transportation. You may offer to drive him/her home (given you did not drink) or call an uber driver to do it instead.

3. Stay Safe

One method to stay safe is by being aware of your body. If you have consumed alcohol, then you are probably somewhere on the spectrum of intoxication or drunkenness. Try to see if your body is displaying signs of slow brain function or cognitive impairment. These signs include slower reaction time and insufficient motor skills. All these signs make you unable to manipulate an automobile. Check if your body is showing the following signs:

● Stumbling or poor balance

● Slurring words or inability to speak clearly

● Unusual behavior such as activities which you do not normally do when sober

4. Listen to people’s advice and accept their help

If a friend, bartender, or the party host advises you not to drive, then the odds are you’re too drunk. Take heed of their advice and acknowledge that they are helping you to be safe.

Further, some bystanders may intervene when they see you drunk. They may offer to take your keys and give you a safe ride home. Your sober friend may offer to take you, so it is best to get in a ride with a trustful person.

In another hand, if you are at a bar, allow the bartender or host to call uber or a cab to bring you home.

5. Stay where you are

If you are unable to find an alternative way to get home, it is best to look for a place to stay that doesn’t require you to drive.

Ask the host if you can spend the night, or ask them to hide your keys until the morning. You may also stay at a friend’s house that lives nearby. If you’re at a bar, don’t hesitate or be afraid to ask the bartender for hotels that are close by. This may require you to spend money, but it will undoubtedly be less than would be spent on an accident and DUI charge.

6. Don’t drink

The most straightforward solution to keep you from drinking and driving is to steer clear from alcoholic beverages. Instead, consume non-alcoholic beverages such as seltzer water, soda, or even coffee. Be humble in declining when someone hands over an alcoholic drink. Provide a kind excuse and say, “No, thanks. I’m the one driving home.”

Always be careful and responsible when you are drinking before driving. Remember that there are a lot of consequences to drunk driving, especially when you get into an accident. If you find yourself in that situation, make sure to call law enforcers immediately. Assess the case, make a report to the police, and call your lawyer like the one here.

Author Bio: April Sears has been a law writer for more than two decades, and she is currently working on her next piece. She also writes pieces on law topics for the common reader. April is family woman, and she loves spending her free time with her family.

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