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Not enough people are leaving functions with sober drivers

There is a reason why drunk driving is illegal in Ohio; it is wildly dangerous and can injure or kill innocent motorists. When an irresponsible driver gets behind the wheel after having had too much to drink, he or she has slower reaction times, impaired judgment, and lowered inhibitions. That combination alone can be disastrous for anyone who happens to be sharing the road with him or her. What makes drunk driving even more unfortunate, however, is that it is entirely preventable. If someone wants to drink, he or she just needs a sober friend or family member to give him or her a ride.

According to a recent online poll conducted by Mothers Against Drunk Driving, nearly three-quarters of adults over the age of 21 have seen someone try to drive home after having too much to drink. Whether these would-be drunk drivers were actually allowed to drive is uncertain, but it is highly likely that at least some of them started driving around Cleveland while intoxicated.

The holidays are an especially dangerous time of year for drunk drivers. There are holiday parties, family get-togethers and other occasions where people can relax and have a few drinks. While there is nothing wrong with drinking, it is not making a safe plan for how to get home that is the concern. If individuals had a designated driver before they left the house, however, it may solve much of the problem.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has said that nearly 1,100 people were killed in drunk driving crashes between Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve. We can only hope that this year that number will fall.

Source: USA Today, "Holiday revelers urged to avoid drunken driving," Larry Copeland, Dec. 11, 2013

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