Plan ahead to avoid risky driving on New Year’s Eve

Photo via @CT_STATE_POLICE Twitter

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – If you plan to go out and ring in the New Year with some adult beverages, have a plan to get home safely. New Year’s Eve is a time to celebrate, but it is also the most dangerous time of the year for drunk driving.

“You have a lot of people who normally don’t go out and socialize – restaurants, house parties – and they don’t realize just how much they’re consuming,” said Michelle Lettieri, Director of Victims Services for Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving says DUI deaths are actually on the rise here in Connecticut.

“Take the safety tips. Very simple: Designate a sober driver. Stay where you are,” said Lettieri.

There never been more options to get you home safely. You can call a cab, or find an Uber or Lyft on your cell phone. Plus there are services like AmRide and idriveyourcar.com that will come get you and your vehicle.

“We are going to have increased enforcement, we’re going to have roving patrols, we are going to have DUI spot checks,” said Trooper Kelly Grant, spokesperson for the Connecticut State Police.

Just last weekend, State Police made 47 separate arrests for DUI, and issued around 1600 tickets for other moving violations, and it is up to all of the good drivers to help stop the dangerous ones.

“If you see a suspected DUI operator or an aggressive or reckless driver, do call 911,” Grant explained. “That is a true emergency. We do need to stop that vehicle.”

Lettieri has been working on trying to stop drunk driving ever since she lost her mother to a drunk driver 23 years ago.

“And it’s 100% preventable,” Lettieri said, holding up car keys. “If you just learn and remember that this and a drink, they don’t mix.”

Have a happy but safe new year.

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