New Year's Eve: You Drink and Drive, You Lose


As we ring in good 'ole 2013, there may be more DUI testing instead of the sounds you typically hear as the ball drops.

According to AAA, New Years Day has been titled the "deadliest day" for alcohol related injuries. Nine out of ten drivers consider it a serious threat to their personal safety when others drink and drive. Law enforcement officers agree.

"If you decide to drink and drive, remember you're putting everyone on the road at risk. [You're also] putting yourself at risk. There's a lot of liability involved both criminally and civically," said Dave Gibbs, sheriff deputy for Buffalo County.

If you are headed to the bars for a drink or two, or even just to meet friends, bar officials say finding a ride home should be your top priority this year if you do decide to celebrate the new year with alcohol.

"We do try to encourage them to call a friend, or a cab; and a lot of the time, we call a cab and pay for it if we have to. We just don't want to see anyone drive," said Adam Daake, owner of Platte Valley Brewery.

Although limiting your drinks at the bars could fall on the shoulders of your bartender, law enforcement says you should probably catch yourself before it gets to that point. If you do not, you will have to suffer the consequences.

"You could get lots of jail time, lose your license, and/or see a hike in insurance rates," said Gibbs. "If it's someone obviously intoxicated trying to drive, and we see them get into a vehicle, we will stop them immediately and prevent them from doing so. If they're already driving down the road, we'll stop them and take them to jail," said Gibbs.

It is pretty simple: you drink and drive, you lose. It's oddly enough the same way it works for bartenders: you drink and drive, they lose because you will be their top priority.

"Everybody likes to make money, but we don't want to do it where anyone would get hurt," said Daake.

REPORTER'S NOTE: Janssen Auto Group of McCook, North Platte and Holdrege, Nebraska, have announced their plans to offer again this year free rides home to anyone needing a safe ride home to anyone on New Year's Eve.

"This is our fourth year of offering this service and are pleased to be able to offer it again this year", said Dave Janssen of Janssen Auto Group.

"While we don't want to encourage people to over indulge on New Year's Eve, we do want to make sure that everyone makes it home safely," Janssen continued.

Janssen Auto Group will be running their shuttle from 8 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. on New Year's Eve and is willing to offer rides to anyone residing within a five-mile radius of McCook, North Platte or Holdrege.

Anyone wishing to use this service in McCook may call Joe Slaby at 308-520-1774. You may call Rod Waldrip at 308-991-1685 for rides in Holdrege. North Platte residents may call Jim Rudolph at 308-530-3293 or Scott Berg at 308-289-4100.