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Keeping Everyone Safe This Holiday Season

News from the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce.

Alcohol-related traffic crashes have decreased in the last decade but the battle is ongoing. In order to reduce these preventable tragedies, the nonprofit Washington Regional Alcohol Program’s (WRAP) 2012 Corporate Guide to Safe Celebrating and Safe Driving offers a few tips for corporate safe celebrating.

Tips for safe celebrating include:

  • Plan ahead and designate a driver if you’re celebrating with alcohol.
  • Use alternative transportation like taxi cabs.
  • Be a responsible host by:

1. Not serving anyone who appears to be impaired.

2. Serving food with alcohol (high protein foods like meats and cheeses stay in the stomach longer thereby slowing the body’s alcohol absorption rate).

3. Using a non-carbonated base in alcoholic punches (the body absorbs alcohol faster when mixed with carbonation).

4. Serving non-alcoholic beverages as an option.

5. Never serving minors.

6. Closing the bar at least an hour before the event’s end.

7. Designating a bartender / don’t let guests mix their own drinks.

8. And never allowing impaired guest to get behind the wheel.

  • Report drunk drivers. In Virginia, law enforcement professionals encourage the use of the #77 feature on wireless phones for motorists to report suspected drunk drivers.
  • Wear your seatbelt. Wearing of a seatbelt may be your best defense against a drunk driver.

Alcohol interferes with the brain’s communication pathways, and can affect the way the brain works disrupting mood behavior, hearing, vision, balance and coordination. Once alcohol elevates to a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 the person has become physically impaired. Some people show signs of impairment even with a low BAC level (as low as .02).

The Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce wishes our local business community a safe holiday season and asks that you employ these tips for safe celebrating.

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