Holiday Safe Driving Tips From The CHP

Don’t mix alcohol and driving.  If you’re going to celebrate with alcohol, have a designated driver targeted to get you home safely.  If you’re not going to drink, offer to be a designated driver for a friend or family member.   

If you’re hosting a party, don’t have an “open bar” but have a person designated to serve and regulate alcohol.  Also, have plenty of non-alcoholic drinks, food, and coffee available.  Assist your guests who have been drinking in finding an alternate way of getting home.

Make sure that you and all passengers in the vehicle are wearing a seatbelt.  It is your responsibility to ensure that all children six years of age or younger are using an approved car seat or booster seat and are seated in the rear seat.

Hang up the phone! In 2011, CHP officers issued over 135,000 citations to distracted drivers talking or text messaging on hand-held cell phones.  Hands-free devices make great holiday gifts.  Avoid the possibility of receiving a citation or being involved in a collision this holiday season by keeping your hands on the wheel and your full attention to your driving.

Don’t drive when you’re tired.  Fatigue can affect your driving as much as alcohol.  A tired driver won’t react quickly to hazards ahead and his or her judgment will be impaired.  If you’re planning a long trip, rest beforehand, take frequent breaks to refresh yourself, and share the driving duties with the others in your vehicle.

With many people attending parties or family gatherings, be especially watchful for pedestrians – not just at crosswalks, but also around parked cars, near restaurants and in residential areas.