5 Tips For Protecting Yourself From Drunk Driving Accidents This New Year’s Eve

Dec 18, 2023 | Personal Injury

While many people around the world celebrate new beginnings and a fresh start on New Year’s Day each year, the night of December 31st is when the festivities truly start. Here in the United States, many Americans choose to mark the occasion by enjoying a drink…or two, or three, or four. 

In fact, New Year’s Eve is one of the “booziest” holidays we celebrate here, only rivaled by Fat Tuesday. Because both of these holidays signify the “last hoorah” (so to speak) before a person begins their resolution to staying sober or before abstaining from alcohol during Lent, someone is much more likely to binge drink and overindulge. Unfortunately, this leads to thousands of drunk driving victims on the morning of January 1st.

If you’re planning to celebrate this New Year’s Day with alcohol – whether it be a lot or a little – it is imperative that you do so responsibly, and refrain from getting behind the wheel of a vehicle. In this blog, we’ll be dropping the five crucial tips you need to know to protect yourself from drunk drivers this holiday, and avoid putting innocent lives at risk by becoming one yourself. 

Tip #1: Have A Plan For Getting Home Safely.

There are simply too many options available for you to avoid driving when you are under the influence, and there is no excuse for ever getting behind the wheel. If going out with a group, choose someone to remain sober and serve as the designated driver. Another option is to ask someone who is not celebrating to pick you up and drive you home. You likely have many family members, friends, and other loved ones who would be happy to do so in order to keep you safe. There is also the option of using public transportation.

Additionally, anyone has the ability to utilize rideshare apps like Uber and Lyft, or other types of taxi services. You will likely spend no more than $30 on that ride, as opposed to the thousands that you might have to spend in the event that you wreck your car, get charged with a DUI, or damage property. The worst case scenario isn’t any of these things, though: it’s injuring or killing yourself, and injuring or killing another person. All things considered, spending that $30 on your safe ride is costing you much less than driving yourself. 

If you are planning to go out and celebrate, but not planning on drinking, you should also have a plan that ensures you have the best chance of making it home safely. This includes pre-mapping your routes to take well-lit and heavily used roads. You should also avoid staying out too late, as you increase your chances of encountering a drunk driver as the night progresses. 

Tip #2: Plan To Stay.

If your celebrations will be taking place at the home of a friend or loved one, another option for ensuring your safety and that of others is to simply plan to stay there for the night. Depending on the amount of alcohol you consume and the time that you stop drinking, you could still be inebriated the morning after, so you should stay put until you are completely sober. Don’t risk your life or another’s life by relying on bogus myths that claim to speed up sobriety, like drinking black coffee or taking a cold shower. The only foolproof way to get sober is time!

Tip #3: If You Don’t Have A Plan To Get Home Safely And You Can’t Stay Put, Stay Sober.

While small, there may be a chance that you are not able to come up with a plan for getting home when you’ve been drinking, nor can you stay the night where you are. In this case, you must make the responsible and potentially life-saving decision to stay sober. Driving while intoxicated is an incredibly selfish decision to make that could have devastating consequences on many different lives. Staying sober is the only infallible way to ensure that you don’t make this mistake!

Tip #4: Be Proactive.

Taking proactive steps not only safeguards you from being caught up in a drunk driving mishap but also looks out for others on the road. If you’re hosting a New Year’s Eve bash at your residence, keep a watchful eye on who’s sipping what. Moderating your own alcohol intake helps you stay on top of others’ consumption, ensuring you don’t inadvertently serve someone who’s hitting the road later. If you’re attending the party as the designated driver, keep a sharp eye out for folks who might have underestimated their drinks but need a safe ride home. It’s all about looking out for each other!

Tip #5: Stay Educated On What To Do If You Do Get Caught Up In An Accident Involving A Drunk Driver.

If you do find yourself in a car accident on New Year’s Eve – or any other day, for that matter – and you believe the driver of the other vehicle to be inebriated, the very first thing you should do is call 911. Not only will law enforcement arrive to handle the incident, but the paramedics will also come to ensure you get medical attention. Even if you don’t think you’re critically injured, you should never deny being taken to the hospital if the paramedics recommend it for two reasons: one, because many injuries – such as internal bleeding and concussions – may not be obvious to the eye, and the rush of adrenaline from your accident may be masking your pain and falsely convincing you that you’re not injured; the second reason is that any injuries you do have will be documented by a medical professional, which will be necessary if you decide to pursue a personal injury claim in the future. 

You should follow your doctor’s orders carefully, so that you recover fully and as quickly as possible. Then, you should seek a skilled and aggressive personal injury attorney to represent you in seeking compensation for your suffering. The insurance companies are notorious for both denying personal injury claims so that they don’t have to pay you anything, and offering inadequate settlements in hopes that you will accept it out of financial desperation or fear that you won’t get a better offer. An attorney can negotiate for a higher settlement or take the insurance company to court if they refuse to give you what you deserve.

Trust Ortega Law Group To Stand Up For You

We are dedicated to holding negligent drivers and their insurance companies accountable, so you can rely on us to do what it takes for them to pay. You don’t owe us anything upfront or out-of-pocket until we win your case! Call today to schedule your free consultation and discover more about how we can effectively navigate you through your personal injury claim.

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