Locals can get a safe ride this holiday season. The numbers are frightening. Seventeen thousand Americans die and 600,000 are injured every year due to drunk drivers, bu tlaw enforcement officers will tell you that the statistics mean nothing when they have to break the news to a loved one.
"Law enforcement are the ones that have to go knock on that door and notify next of kin that their loved one has been killed, sometimes irresponsibly by a drunk driver,” says LTC Ken Howes of FHP.
Officers arrested 950 impaired drivers in Leon County last year. Keeping those drivers off the road in the first place is the goal of a program called Safe Rides. Companies like Tri-Eagle Sales, AAA and Yellow Cab are teaming up to tote home the tipsy.
"We try to say designate a driver, if not call Yellow Cab at least get home safely. That's the whole focus," says Yellow Cab Marketing Director Brenda Zaid.
If you don't want to leave your car behind there is another option, a tow home.
"AAA's not here to police anyone. We're simply here as concerned people for the motorists to get people off of the highway. That's why we implemented this program. That's why we have no fees attached to this program," says Brenda Smith of AAA Auto Club South.
So if you're stepping out on the town or throwing a party this holiday season, take down these numbers: 80-8080 for Yellow Cab and 1-800-AAA-HELP for a tow. The Safe Rides program starts this Wednesday and goes through New Year's Day.