Whether you are going out to have dinner and drinks with friends or you are headed out for a night out on the town, it may be a good idea to bring a designated driver. Although designated drivers are considered part of the group, it is understood that they will not drink any alcoholic beverages. This person will then be the one who drives everyone safely to their destination. While you may feel comfortable and safe getting into a car with a designated driver, studies show that these drivers may not be as safe as some may think. In some cases, designated drivers may lead to a serious car accident.
The study released in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs found that up to 40% of designated drivers have consumed some amount of alcohol during the evening. Approximately 18% of these designated drivers had a blood alcohol level of 0.05 on a breath test. Although the legal limit in the state is 0.08, people with a BAC level of 0.05 can show serious impairments, including slowed cognitive function, delayed reaction times and blurry vision. In fact, Utah has recently passed legislation making the legal limit 0.05 in the state.
Fortunately, there are other options when it comes to getting home safe from a night out. Rather than designated a person from your group to avoid drinking, consider calling a car company, such as Uber or Lyft, to pick up your group. It may be safer and everyone can have a good time.
This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.