New Year's Eve is one of the most festive nights of the year, but it can also be one of the most dangerous.
Drunk driving is a big — and common — problem on the roads, and with rain in the forecast for Southern California, it's a reminder to be extra careful.
L.A. Metro is offering free rides on all bus and rail lines between 9 p.m. on New Year's Eve and 2 a.m. on Jan. 1, and service will continue through the night.
Orange County's bus service will also be free between 6 p.m. and 2:30 a.m. New Year's. All 70 of their lines will participate. You can get more information on specific routes on the county's website.
Drunk driving peaks on New Year's Eve between 9 p.m. and 1 a.m., said Patricia Rillera, regional executive director of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) in Southern California.
"We understand that people will be celebrating and we just want people to make the most important decision of all, and that's really to have a designated driver or a way to get home safely," Rillera said. "It's the one New Year's resolution really that can save a life."
If you're hosting a New Year's Eve party, it's important to plan to help your guests get home safety, Rillera said.
"Most people don't want to be the bad cop, but you could potentially be saving not only your friend's life, but you could be saving the lives of others," Rillera said.
If you're hosting a party:
- Plan some activities for your guests that don't involve drinking.
- Prominently display the phone number of a local taxi company.
- Call a cab or an Uber or Lyft for a guest.
- Take away the car keys of impaired guests.
- Be prepared to let guests stay over.
- In the worst case scenario, call police.
Over the 2015 Christmas holiday and New Year's Eve last year, 259 people nationwide were killed in drunk driving crashes.
In 2015, more than 10,000 people died in drunk driving crashes and nearly 300,000 people were injured in drunk driving crashes, according to the National Highway Safety Administration.