Help prevent impaired driving among students with these strategies.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the highest percentage of people who drive while intoxicated are 21 to 24 years old – 27% of all drunk driving fatalities involved drivers in this age group. Many people in that age range are college students, making college drunk driving prevention programs one of our most important efforts against drunk driving among young adults.
If you’re looking for ways to engage with students and enrich your educational programs, check out these drunk driving prevention tips specifically for college-age students.
- It doesn’t take a lot
- Use campus shuttles, rideshares, and public transportation
- Offer alternatives to drinking
Read on for more drunk driving prevention tips you can share in your prevention program.
It doesn’t take a lot
Driving under the influence of any amount of alcohol is illegal for anyone under the age of 21 and can not only have serious legal repercussions but can also be deadly. Even for adults over the age of 21, it can only take a drink or two for their judgment and abilities to be seriously compromised.
The legal limit in most states is a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of .08 percent, but people all metabolize alcohol differently, and even if a person “feels fine,” they may be well beyond the legal limit. The best drunk driving prevention tip to stress to students is that any amount can impact their driving skills and reflexes — even just one drink can have fatal consequences.
You can help students understand the severity of driving after any amount of alcohol with Fatal Vision’s intoxiclock® Pro software and activity kits. intoxiclock® Pro helps students visualize the impact alcohol can have on their bodies depending on facts such as the amount consumed, time since consumption, gender, weight, and more.
Use campus shuttles, rideshares, and public transportation
Make students aware of campus shuttles that operate later at night and their travel routes. It’s helpful to highlight these shuttles during freshman orientation and routinely as the school year progresses to remind them.
If possible, consider offering students a discount on a rideshare like Lyft or Uber or public transportation to discourage drunk driving. For instance, the University of Chicago offers students 10 free rides per month (up to $15 off per ride) on all evening rides within a certain distance of campus. If your drunk driving prevention program can find ways to incentivize students to take public or rideshare transportation when they know they’ll be drinking, you can help increase the likelihood that they’ll actually use it.
Offer alternatives to drinking
With just over half of all college students reporting that they drink regularly and roughly a third of all college students engaging in binge drinking (typically considered consuming more than 4 drinks over a period of 2 hours), it’s important for schools to provide alcohol-free alternative activities for students.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that the first six weeks of a student’s freshman year at college is an incredibly “vulnerable time for harmful and underage college drinking and for alcohol-related consequences because of student expectations and social pressures at the start of the academic year.”
If your educational program, student government, or student life department can provide alcohol-free programming like movie nights, game nights, intramural sports, and community volunteer opportunities, you’ll help give students a more positive outlet for socializing while reducing the chance that they’ll drive while intoxicated.