San Antonio, Texas-January 29, 2017-A D.W.I. (Driving While Intoxicated) charge is no joke and no way to end your New Year's Eve celebration. In Texas, there's a few other charges to mention that could relate to your New Year's Eve celebration as well: Public Intoxication (P.I.) and Possession of Alcoholic Beverage in Motor Vehicle which is also commonly referred to as the “Open Container Law.”
In addition to the potential criminal conviction we don't want to leave out the devastating results from automobile crashes caused by intoxicated drivers. According to the website, “The Right Step,” in 2016 987 Texans lost their lives in DUI incidents. Sadly, San Antonio led the state in DUI related crashes in 2016 with 1,845 almost 400 more than the second place city-Houston.
“The best defense is a good offense,” is a quote that is often applied in military combat and games. An early American reference is in a letter written by George Washington in 1799 to John Trumbull: “…make them believe, that offensive operations, often times, is the surest, if not the only (in some cases) means of defence (sp).” We'll use this wisdom going forward in this blog post.
Years ago a young lady in our family constant rallied, “Ya' Gotta Have a Plan!” If you're going to be drinking the best way to prevent any legal ramifications is to plan for how you're going to party. At our house, we're hosting a party and the guests are staying over for the night in their RVs.
Long before you go out for the New Year's Eve party, you need to make arrangements. Let's discuss options:
- Some of us are lucky enough to have a “teetotaler” friend that we can drag along for the guaranteed “D.D.” (designated driver) duties. Most bars and facilities will give those kindhearted souls free non-alcoholic drinks as a reward. Great way to go if EVERYONE can stay in the same vehicle and agree to the schedule.
- Pro-Tip: Offer to buy the D.D.'s dinner or some other token of appreciation.
- Reality Check: This can go “wrong” if personalities conflict when the alcohol begins to flow and folks begin to “change.”
- Ridesharing services are the “new normal” for hitching a ride. Load the apps on your mobile device(s) right now! (App links below) Have them set up and ready before you get tipsy. You can arrange them in advance or you can hail a ride at a moment's notice if you have an “unplanned intoxication.”
- Pro-Tip: The expert, bar-hopping party animals swear by these services. You can hit a ton of bars in a district for rides that cost less than the high-dollar gin drinks you'll be buying at the trendy watering hole.
- Pro-Tip: Most of these drivers are working a “side hustle” and are eager to please with amenities like phone charging cable and mints. Make sure to give them good reviews on the app if they take good care of you during the ride-they can be kicked out of the program if their satisfaction rating gets too low.
- Reality Check: My experience on ridesharing is that you will meet interesting folks driving the cars and its cheaper than taxi cabs.
- Taxi cabs are just fine too!
- Pro-Tip: Taxis are less likely to provide the level of service as a ride share and are likely more expensive. They've gotten into the Apps too. (see below for OneLocal App)
- Reality Check: Call the cab avoid the disastrous consequences that could come if you make poor choices.
- Be a “pimp” and go big with a limousine. The most elegant, expensive, cat-daddy limo in your town is cheap in comparison to the cost of a D.W.I. Trust me. You can roll in style for the night and “slap in on Instagram” to make all your friends jealous.
- Pro-Tip: Call around and work the companies for the best price-a limo sitting in the garage isn't making any money so they might get aggressive on pricing. Plus if you have enough people in the group the cost will be spread amongst the group.
- Reality Check: This experience can make for a really awesome night-spoil yourself and don't sweat the higher cost for the first-class experience.
- Do whatever it takes to NOT drive after drinking! But don't do something else that will imperil you like trying to walk home in the middle of the night!
- Phone a friend.
- Stay at the party host's place (a sore back from a crappy couch is a far better fate).
- Ask the bartender-the nightclub may offer free taxi service.
- Some tow companies offer free tows home on certain nights of the year like New Year's Eve.
Please take the necessary steps to keep yourself, AND THE REST OF THE WORLD, safe on New Years Eve (and every other day of the year). The cost, inconvenience and grief associated with a D.W.I. and/or an associated crash are devastating. An old ad campaign once said, “D.W.I. you CAN'T afford it.” It is 100% true…ask anyone whose had one.
Load the apps on your phone right now! Here are the links:
Ridesharing, a.k.a. Uber, Lift, etc.
Taxi Cabs (In San Antonio Area)
- OneLocal App
- iOs (Apple)
- Phone Numbers
- Yellow Cab (210) 222-2222
- San Antonio Taxis (210) 444-2222