Four-Leaf Clovers Don’t Save Lives: Sober Drivers Do

clover cuffsThis Sunday is St. Patrick’s Day – and you know what that means:green clothing, green decorations and even green beer. But if you’re going to have a glass of that festive brew, be sure to hand over your keys first – because luck won’t keep you out of a jam on St. Patrick’s Day.

 
St. Patrick’s Day has become a popular night out to celebrate with friends and family.  Unfortunately, it has also become a very dangerous night due to the large volume of drunk drivers.

In 2010, more than 10,000 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes – that’s one every 51 minutes!!1  That is 10,000 too many! 80% deaths on St. Patty’s Day involved drunk drivers who were nearly twice the legal limit!2

If you decide to imbibe and opt to enjoy an Irish Car Bomb, don’t rely on the Luck of the Irish to get you home – opt to get a Designated O’Driver!

Irish eyes smile upon the designated sober driver:

Designate a Sober Driver

Don’t bet on your Irish Luck this St. Patrick’s Day – or this could be you!

Finding a designated driver on St. Patrick’s Day isn’t Luck. It’s Smart!!

Sources:
1. Imparired Driving on St. Patrick’s Day | NHTSA
2. St. Patrick’s Day Safe Driving Campaign

One week before graduation…

From Innocent to Incarcerated (In just one night)

Too young to drink. Too dumb not to drive.

Nathan Gentry’s parents will not be watching him walk at Brownsburg High School’s graduation ceremony this Friday, nor will they experience the proud joy of dropping him off at Indiana University this fall to begin the next chapter of his life. Instead, Nathan’s parents will have to close a chapter in their lives when they lay Nathan to rest today.

Just one week before graduation, Nathan was killed in an auto accident that also put four of his friends in the hospital.

What’s even more tragic is the confirmation that alcohol and marijuana were both factors in a devastating ending to a promising young life, something that could have should have been prevented. This is a tragic reminder of  the consequences of drinking and driving — particularly when you have a novice driver who by all accounts is also a novice drinker.

Car accidents due to inexperienced driving is understandable as well as somewhat unavoidable — it’s simply a fact of life than can be tolerated.  But when a driver decides to get behind the wheel with distractions, booze and selfish decisions their car becomes a “loaded weapon” — is intolerable and 100% preventable.

Teens are at far greater risk of death in an alcohol-related crash than the overall population, despite the fact that they are below the minimum drinking age in every State. Among 15- to 20-year-old drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2006, 31 percent of the drivers who were killed had been drinking and 77 percent of these drivers were unrestrained. 1

Graduation season is upon us, which means parents need to step up their game and talk their teens about alcohol.

It’s not just good parenting — it’s a matter of life and death. While I don’t condone underage drinking, the reality is that it’s going to happen — something I am personally guilty of.   While my mom didn’t support the idea of underage drinking, but the woman also wasn’t an idiot.  What was most important to my mom was to make me aware that if I drank she wouldn’t necessarily ring my neck…unless I made the piss poor decision to get behind the wheel.  She instilled in me that a parents anger over their child’s reckless decisions is generated solely out of love and protection, rather than just trying to be mean.  I credit my mom’s realistic approach to the dangers she knew I would face  as the reason I survived my teenage years. (Thanks mom!)

Parental responsibility to underage drinking


Sure, talking to your teen isn’t easy — but then again, neither is saving lives

Set the standards by talking to your teen about safety issues and the rules that you are setting. Explain each one of your rules and the consequences for breaking it.  Some guidelines should include:

  • Defining acceptable behavior – Different approaches work for different families, chose what works for your family and what you think will resonate with your teen
  • Setting clear consequences for their actions – Lay out a clear message of what your expectations are, and lay out a clear message of the consequences if those expectations aren’t met
  • Be aware of personal liability – While your teen’s safety is the driving factor in this effort, it is important for them to know the legal ramifications as well.  Additionally,  it is also important for adults to also be aware of  the social host liability risks.

Communicate with your teen freely and frequently —  constant communication is the most important factor in helping keep your teen safe!

If you live in Indiana and would like to discuss your insurance with me Click Here.

Further Reading:

Source:

1. NHTSA Teen Drivers | Access to Alcohol

Amigos don’t let amigos drive drunk

Drink On The 5th And In Jail By The 6thCinco de Mayo has become a big night out for many, particularly among young adults. This festive day has another ‘six-pack tradition’ here on All-American party calendar, just like our devotion to becoming Irish on St. Patrick’s Day. But it is also a very dangerous night out because of alcohol-impaired drivers. Impaired driving crashes killed 10,228 people in 2010, accounting for 31 percent of all traffic-related deaths in the United States.  That’s an average of one alcohol impaired driving fatality nearly every 51 minutes.1

Those celebrating should be sure to designate their sober driver in advance – before the fiesta begins — or you may wake up in jail on Seis de Mayo.

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Don’t depend on dumb luck this St. Patrick’s Day

This Saturday is St. Patrick’s Day – and you know what that means – booze.

St. Patrick’s Day has become a popular night out to celebrate with friends and family.  Unfortunately, it has also become a very dangerous night due to the large volume of drunk drivers.

In 2009 there were 103 crash fatalities on St. Patrick’s Day.  Of these fatalities 37% involved alcohol-impaired drivers with a BAC of .08 or higher. (NHTSA)

If you decide to imbibe and opt to enjoy an Irish Car Bomb, don’t rely on the Luck of the Irish to get you home – designate a sober driver.

Irish eyes smile upon the designated sober driver:

Don’t bet on your Irish Luck this St. Patrick’s Day – or this could be you!