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  • Lauri Beekmann

Survey reveals: Danes so often fail to stop a drunk driver


20.12.2022 - Drink-driving was responsible for almost 1,000 accidents last year, but despite the fact that many Danes have experienced people under the influence of alcohol getting behind the wheel, too few choose to intervene. This is shown by a new study, which Kantar Gallup has carried out for Gjensidige.


For many Danes, the month of December means an increased intake of alcohol, which often happens in connection with Christmas's many pleasant gatherings with friends, family and colleagues. Unfortunately, it is also a time when far too many people get behind the wheel under the influence of alcohol.


Although it is always the driver's responsibility not to drink and drive, many Danes fail to intervene when they experience such a situation.


In the survey, one in five Danes said they knew one or more people who had been drink-driving. But of those who were with the person just before he or she was drink-driving, only 12% took action and got it stopped. 20%, on the other hand, chose not to intervene at all. The remaining 68% were either not present in the situation or did not want to answer the question.


While the responsibility lies with the driver, it can make a big difference if others intervene. That's why you should try to reason with the driver as much as possible, says Henrik Sagild, director of claims at Gjensidige.


"Intervening with a potential drunk driver can prevent violent accidents. Therefore, you should also try to reason with the person and give them a significantly better chance of making the right decision," he says.


Often, people are not deliberately putting their own and others' lives at risk, they are just showing very poor judgement. Witnessing a situation where someone is drink-driving can suggest an alternative way of getting home, thereby preventing an accident from happening.


"Unfortunately, it's a known problem that common sense declines as blood alcohol levels rise. Here, a conversation, and perhaps the offer of a taxi, can make a big difference," says Henrik Sagild.


Seven tips for talking people out of drink-driving


1: Tell him/her you feel bad about his/her driving


2: Try to talk him/her out of driving and take the car keys if necessary

3: Team up with others so that there are more of you to support each other

4: Call for a taxi and possibly lend him/her money for the taxi

5: Offer accommodation

6: Give a lift if you have not been drinking

7: If he/she drives anyway: call the police

Source: Council for Safe Traffic



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