How to Stay Safe on the Roads on New Year’s Eve

The holiday season is cause for celebration, and New Year’s Eve festivities are right around the corner. No matter how you plan on ringing in the New Year, one thing remains certain – December 31st is one of the most dangerous nights to be on the road (for motorists and pedestrians alike). Whether you’re driving to a friend’s party or hitting your favorite club, motorists can expect to see an increased presence of police check points thanks to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Drive Sober campaign.

It goes without saying that you should never drink and drive or operate a vehicle while impaired. Even if you have a designated driver or take taxis, you’re likely to come across impaired revelers behind the wheel this New Year’s Eve. According to the NHTSA, drunk driving accidents claimed almost 11,000 lives last year in the U.S., and December is one of the deadliest months of all.  Some 885 people lost their lives in crashes involving a drunk driver last December.

Tips for road safety this holiday season

So how can you stay safe on the roads this New Year’s Eve? The NHTSA offers these practical tips.

  • Designate a sober driver – One of the best ways to enjoy the evening’s celebrations is by asking a friend or family member – or a companion who is not drinking – to drive you back home safely. With a sober, alert driver at the wheel, there are fewer chances of being hurt in an alcohol-related accident
  • Always buckle up – Using a seat belt is one of the best defenses to keeping you safe in the event of an accident with an impaired driver.
  • Use public transportation – Trains, taxis and buses are an excellent option for getting around town safely. If public transport isn’t available, consider using a ride hailing service instead.
  • Download the Safer Ride mobile app — Before heading out for the night, you can download a free Safer Ride app, provided by the NHTSA. The app is available on Android and Apple smart phones and lets you share your location and arrange a sober driver to pick you up.
  • Stay distraction free – Alcohol and drugs aren’t the only concern on New Year’s Eve. Stay alert for distracted drivers and call 911 if you see a motorist who driving erratically or seems impaired.
  • Prepare to stay overnight – If you indulged in one too many drinks, it’s better to stay off the roads completely. This could mean getting a hotel room or staying at a friends’ house. The app Hotel Tonight (available on iOS and Android) finds cheap, last-minute deals on nearby hotels and lets you book them on the spot.

Even if you refrain from drinking, that doesn’t mean the streets are safe. If at all possible, try and avoid being on the roads after 9 PM, and if you must be, plan well in advance.

Hit Hard with Bart Bernard™

On behalf of the Bart Bernard Injury Lawyers, we hope you have a wonderful and safe New Year’s Eve with friends, loved ones and family.  By taking a few precautions, you can help ensure your celebrations aren’t marred by tragedy.  In the event of an accident, it’s important to take swift action to protect your legal rights.

For years, Louisiana residents have relied on the dedication and results offered by car accident lawyer Bart Bernard. To arrange a free case evaluation, call us today.

Our injury attorneys represent victims in Lafayette, Baton Rouge, Acadiana and all Louisiana.

Additional Resources:

  1. NHTSA, NHTSA Reminds Motorists to Drive Sober this Holiday Season
  2. Northwestern Medicine, 5 Tips for New Year’s Eve Safety



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