It should come as no surprise to anyone that driving under the influence is one of the most common causes of car crashes by far. Despite the law, many people still choose to drink before getting behind the wheel. That decision can have catastrophic and far-reaching impact. To make matters worse, many who drive under the influence don’t realize they’re doing so. That’s because of unclear rules about what you are allowed to drink before getting in the car.
That’s why we would argue that, if you’re the designated driver, you’re best off saying no to any alcohol. While you’re allowed a small amount, even that much could change your life forever. If you stick to cokes all night, however, there’s no room for error. To prove why this is worth doing, let’s look at a few of the reasons drinking any alcohol before reaching for your car keys could be a bad idea.
It’s easy to go over the limit
Despite how widely they’re advertised, most of us have a pretty loose idea of how many units we’re allowed to drink while driving. Even if we know the numbers, we might not know how many units are in different drinks. Most people would say they’re safe with a pint, for example, but each beer manufacturer uses different percentages. Equally, one drink is sure to send you over the limit if your drink a high percentage spirit. Even if you think you’re sticking to what you’re allowed, you could find yourself over. And, the chances are that the law won’t take your protestations of ignorance into account.
Alcohol affects everyone differently
In many ways, even sticking within the limit leaves you at risk. That’s because alcohol affects everyone in different ways. A person with a low tolerance could still find themselves involved in an accident as a result of one drink. Even if your alcohol level were below the limit, dangerous driving would still see you in trouble. At the very least, you’d face the severe cost of compensation to the other driver.
There’s too much at risk
Many would also argue that the risk of saying yes to even one drink is too severe. When you get behind the wheel, you have a lot of responsibility on your shoulders. You need to care for those in your car, and the other drivers around you. One lapse of judgement could lead to fatalities and wrongful death cases coming your way. With that much riding on your ability to drive well, it’s difficult to justify clouding your judgment with so much as one sip.
It’s undeniably difficult to stay sober when everyone around you is drinking. But, as you can see, it’s worth putting a blanket ban on anything if you’re trusted with getting everyone home. To make it more manageable, be sure to take it in turn with your friends. At least that way, you’ll be able to get stuck in the majority of times you go out without risk.