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MADD’s Tie One On For Safety

In 1986, the Cosby Show, Family Ties and Cheers were the most popular television shows. Moviegoers first met Ferris Bueller and Crocodile Dundee. The Chicago Bears won the Super Bowl.

Thirty years ago, MADD also launched their “Tie One On For Safety” campaign, raising awareness about the dangers on our roads during the holiday season. It’s the organization’s longest running campaign and it’s just as important now as it was in 1986.

MADD encourages everyone to display a MADD red ribbon as a reminder of the importance of designated drivers. In honor of MADD’s efforts and to point out just how greatly we are affected by drunk driving, we thought it would be a great time to look at why the campaign is so important.

Drunk Driving and the Holiday Season

In the final month of 2014, there were 2,411 alcohol-related crashes in Texas, which resulted in 110 fatalities and 190 serious injuries, according to the Texas Department of Transportation. It’s this spike in road fatalities during the holiday season that prompted Texas to launch its own campaign, “Holiday: Plan While You Can.”

The drunk driving problem should be of special concern to Texans. As MADD has pointed out before, Texas regularly leads the nation in drunk driving. On average, a person is injured or killed in a drunk driving-related crash every 20 minutes in Texas. The TxDOT urges drunk driving awareness during the football season, around NASCAR events and during summer holidays, but the need for their campaign during the holiday season is especially important, as is evidenced by the fact that Texas law enforcement ramps up their efforts to crack down on drunk driving in the period from Thanksgiving to New Year’s.

What You Can Do

MADD, the transportation department and safety advocates make plenty of resources available to educate the public about the importance of drunk driving awareness during the holiday season. They also provide several tips, some of which are:

  • Always prepare when going out for a holiday event or party by arranging transportation ahead of time or designating a sober driver.
  • If you are hosting a party, make sure that you collect the keys of anyone who is drinking, and either arrange transportation for your guests or give them a place to stay.
  • When hosting a holiday party where drinks are served, offer non-alcoholic drinks, plenty of food and make sure you stop serving drinks well before the party is over.
  • Keep numbers of taxis or ride-share services programmed into your phone in case you need to call a ride.

Heeding MADD’s Advice

As MADD states so eloquently, put safety before the party. We can all do our part to make roads safer during the holiday season by following MADD’s advice. The holidays are the perfect time to reconnect with family and friends. They offer us the chance to take time out of our busy lives to focus on the things that are important to us. This holiday season, follow MADD’s advice – don’t let your holiday be marred by drunk driving.

To learn more about the Tie One On For Safety campaign, see MADD’s website.