Drive and Ride Sober

2 min read · 3 sections

The first Monday in September is approaching, and that means Labor Day celebrations will soon be underway. Just like any other holiday, it’s important that safety takes priority to not only ensure that everyone has fun in their own way, but that everyone will live to share their memories for years to come.

Labor Day weekend can be one of the deadliest times on the road. In 2017, 36% of the 376 people that died in traffic crashes in that year’s holiday weekend, involved a drunk driver. Annually, drunk driving takes the lives of 10,000 people; these are preventable deaths. Furthermore, alcohol is the third leading cause of death in the United States, with alcohol-related causes killing approximately 88,000 individuals per year.

Marketing Initiative Against Impaired Driving/Riding

Americans may embrace holidays like Labor Day weekend as opportunities to unwind and throw caution to the wind. However, solutions needed to be created to save lives. Law enforcement officers forged a strategic partnership with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to aid in the yearly high-visibility enforcement campaign.

Slogans containing the phrases “drive sober” or “ride sober” are part of a marketing initiative to save lives during a time when there is an increase in motorists who get behind their vehicle while intoxicated. “Drive Sober” refers to driving a vehicle, such as a car or truck, without being impaired. “Ride Sober” refers to operating a motorcycle without being impaired.

Drive and Rider Sober or Get Pulled Over

“Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over,” or “Ride Sober or Get Pulled Over,” are the 2020 national enforcement mobilizations, and they go into effect between August 19, 2020 through September 7, 2020.

If you’re choosing to drink, you’re choosing to consume a substance that can impair your body. The more alcohol in your body, the more of an impact it has on you. Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) refers to the measurement of alcohol within your bloodstream. This measure is used for medical and legal purposes to determine an individual’s intoxication levels. It’s based on weight in milligrams per unit of volume in milliliters.

Some effects of blood alcohol concentration on the human body:

  • At .02, there is a partial loss of judgement and individual is in a relaxed state. This leads to a decrease in being able to execute two tasks simultaneously and a decrease in visual functions.
  • At .05, there is exaggerated behavior, lowered alertness, and impaired judgement. This causes a reduction in following moving objects and the inability to efficiently respond in emergency driving situations.
  • At .08, muscle coordination is poor, and reasoning and self-control are impaired. This impacts short-term memory loss and impaired perception during driving/riding.

Safety While Driving this Labor Day

Regardless of how you plan to celebrate for the Labor Day this year, safety needs to be the top priority. Not only do you want to follow safety measures by wearing a mask, social distancing with those outside of your immediate household, and washing your hands regularly, but you want to make sound decisions by being responsible if you choose to drink.

Ways to be safe Labor Day weekend:

  • If you plan to drink alcohol (or use any substances that could impair your driving), make arrangements beforehand for a ride home.
  • If you see a drunk driver on the road, call 911.
  • Be a friend. Take the keys away from someone who is impaired and make sure they get home safely.

American Addiction Centers is the nationwide leader in treating alcoholism, substance use disorders, and co-occurring mental health illnesses. If you’re battling an alcohol use disorder, seek help from trusted medical professionals, and get on the road to recovery today!

Have a wonderful holiday weekend… and be safe!

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