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By the end of 2017, 10,874 people had died in the US through road accidents resulting from drunk driving, according to the NHTSA. In most cases, these casualties could have been avoided if the drivers involved in the situations had taken some time to think before getting behind the wheel. Sadly, most are typically too impaired to think about the consequences of driving drunk, with most going beyond the average legal blood alcohol content limit of 0.08%.
Were such drivers to have a friend around who was to try and stop them from driving, the narrative could have been different. So, why let your friend drive when drunk today? While it might seem tough to convince them, it is worth trying.
Here is how to make the task easier:
Ask Them to Get an Interlock Device
If your friend is typically reasonable when sober, it might be wise to reason with them about getting an Ignition interlock device. This will ensure that the driver can’t start their car when drunk past the legal drinking limit. Typically, your friend will need to blow into the device whenever they try to start it.
Additionally, they will also need to breathe into it sometime during the trip to ensure that they didn’t start drinking in the car or have someone else breathe into the device for them. Ideally, this can be a great way to stop accidents from happening on the road. Urge all your friends to embrace having an ignition interlock device on their cars to save their lives.
To ensure that they get home safe, offer to drive your friend home if possible. However, this might be an issue if you too were drinking with them. Why not call a cab to take you both home? You should offer the cab driver clear direction of your address to ensure that you do not get lost. If they are far away from home, you should also consider offering the friend a place to sleep. It is better to go through some inconvenience than lose a friend.
Try To Reason Out With Them
Some friends will turn violent when drunk. It might take a lot of effort to even get them to see things from your perspective without them starting a fight. As such, avoid being confrontational when explaining why your friend needs to use an alternative means to get home.
Instead, approach them in a calm and caring tone. Since it might be tougher for them to understand what you are telling them when drunk, consider trying to be as clear as possible. If all things fail, take the keys away from them in a cunning manner.
Do Not Fear To Call the Police
Calling the police on a friend should be the last resort, especially if the person is persistent despite being drunk beyond legal levels. While your friend is likely to spend the night in police custody, it is better off than losing the friend in an accident.
If you feel that they are adamant enough to drive, contact the police. Once they regain their sobriety, you can then explain to them why you took such adverse steps. If the friend is reasonable enough, they will understand that you were only looking out for their interests. You can then either choose to drive their car home for them or keep their keys in a safe place for them to pick up the car later.
It only takes a single ignorant drunk driver to lead to a massive loss of lives, not to mention the property damage that can occur. The more care you can show for your friends, the lower the chances of this happening to them. Consider the tips above to save a friend from trouble.