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NHTSA reminds us that there is something far more dangerous on Valentine’s Day than forgetting the flowers, chocolates, or dinner reservations: drinking and driving. If you do drink a small amount of alcohol and plan to drive only after sobering up, make sure you understand the effects of alcohol on your body. Alcohol level is measured by the weight of the alcohol in a certain volume of blood, and this is called BAC (blood alcohol content or concentration). If you’re wondering how many drinks you can have and legally drive, the best and safest answer is zero. Remember that buzzed driving is drunk driving.
Unfortunately for those who choose to drive after drinking on Valentine's Day, this love-filled holiday can also be full of DUI arrests, loss of life, and guilt that lasts a lifetime. That's no way to impress your date. You may think Valentine’s Day and alcohol are a great pair. If you have a way to get home from that date safely without drinking and driving, having a few drinks isn’t usually an issue for most people. But too many times, people drink without any plan on how they’ll get home safely.
You thought those gifts for your sweetie were expensive? A DUI arrest can cost thousands of dollars including court costs, attorney fees, fines, interlock device expenses, and other things. Valentine's Day already digs into your pocketbook, so don't let a DUI be another thing you have to pay for! If you're driving after the date, enjoy non-alcoholic mocktails at dinner or have drinks once you get home.
One way to avoid drunk driving is to have a plan BEFORE you start drinking. Your safe driving plan may include public transportation, a designated driver, a ridesharing service, or a taxi or friend to pick you up. Think of it as part of the fun of your date. Having a chauffeured ride to take you around town for a Valentine’s outing sounds really special. You'll get bonus points from your date for being so thoughtful and responsible.
A cocktail or glass of wine with dinner should be a small part of a beautiful, lasting memory, not the prelude to a deadly, drunk driving crash. This Valentine’s Day and every day after, share the love by always driving sober. To find out how Smart Start of Louisiana is helping to separate drinking from driving, call us or fill out our contact form.
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