Safe Holiday Party Tips

December is National Drunk & Drugged Driving (3d) Prevention Month

Myths vs. Facts

What Every Host Needs to Know

If a guest drinks too much

During this Holiday Season, remember these important tips when you are hosting or participating in social activities where alcohol is served .   Social responsibility encompasses everything from planning the party menu to assessing how guests will get home safely once the party is over. Your role as a responsible party host can keep your friends and loved ones safe.

Safe Party Tips

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From the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)

Myths vs. Facts About Drinking and Driving

Myth: Coffee can sober up someone who has had too much to drink.
Fact: Only time sobers. It takes about one hour to oxidize each drink.

Myth: Hard liquor is more intoxicating than beer or wine.
Fact: A 12-ounce can of beer, a five-ounce glass of wine, a 12-ounce wine cooler contain the same amount of alcohol and the same intoxication potential as 1 1/2 oz. of liquor.

Myth: Someone who has had too much to drink will look intoxicated.
Fact: Someoneís physical appearance can be misleading. One drink can impair someoneís ability to drive. Judgment is the first thing affected when someone has been drinking and important motor skills are next.

What Every Host Needs to Know

  • Donít rely on coffee to sober up your guests. Only time can make someone sober.
  • Beer and wine are just as intoxicating as hard liquor. A 12-ounce can of beer, a five-ounce glass of wine, a 12-ounce wine cooler and an ounce and a half of liquor contain the same amount of alcohol.
  • Donít rely on someoneís physical appearance to determine if he or she has had too much to drink.
  • Mixers wonít help dilute alcohol. Carbonated mixers like club soda or tonic water cause alcohol to be absorbed into a personís system more quickly. Fruit juice and other sweet mixers mask the taste of alcohol and may cause people to drink more.

During the Party

  • Never serve alcohol to someone under the legal drinking age, and never ask children to serve alcohol at parties.
  • Donít let guests mix their own drinks. Choosing a reliable ďbartenderĒ will help you keep track of the size and number of drinks that guests consume.
  • If a guest appears to be drinking a bit much, offer to freshen his or her drink with a virgin version.
  • Do not push drinks! Drinking at a party is not mandatory for having a good time.
  • Have fun Ė but not too much fun. To be a good host, you should stay within your limits in order to make sure your guests stay within theirs.
  • Close the bar 90 minutes before the party ends and serve a great dessert treat with coffee. Remember, only time sobers someone who has been drinking.
  • If, despite your efforts, some of your guests have had too much to drink, drive them home, arrange for a ride with another guest who is sober, call a taxi, or invite them to stay over.

If a guest is drinking too much

How do I approach one of my guests who has had too much to drink? I mean, I donít want to lose a friend.

The first time is the hardest, but your actions could save your friends life or that you cannot let them drive home because you care. Offer to let the guest spend the night, call a cab, or ask a sober guest to drive the intoxicated person home.

  • Engage him/her in a conversation to slow down the drinking.
  • Offer high protein food.
  • Offer to make the next drink and use less alcohol.
  • Donít be afraid to insist that they sit out the sipping for awhile or switch to beverages of the non-alcoholic varietyĖ sparkling cider makes a great substitute for a glass of champagne.

How will I be held responsible if one of my guests is involved in a crash?

The laws vary from state to state, but you could be held responsible for the costs associated with the crash, including medical bills and property damage and be sued for emotional pain and suffering.

If You Are Going Out To Drink 

  • Designate a driver ahead of time ó a designated driver is a non-drinking driver.

  • Take a cab or public transportation.

  • Make a reservation and spend the night.

  • Consume food, sip your drinks, and alternate with non-alcoholic beverages.

  • Ask your server about a ride home if you have been drinking to the point of impairment.

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