Originally posted June 17, 2019, updates to this article were made on June 23, 2020.
A summer tradition with fireworks, friends and family, Independence Day is one of our country’s favorite holidays and a cause to celebrate. The 4th of July holiday is also one of the deadliest because of drunk driving. In 2018, 193 people were killed in a motor vehicle accident from July 3 through July 5 in the U.S., and 40 percent of those fatalities resulted from drunk driving.
Make plans for a safe holiday
Planning ahead helps ensure you can celebrate the holiday safely. While it might take some extra time, those few minutes can be the difference between drinking and driving or finding a safe way home. Here are a few ways to make sure you don’t get behind the wheel after you’ve been drinking:
- Find and plan with your designated driver in advance of the day you need a ride
- Use a rideshare service such as Uber or Lyft, or a taxi service
- Use public transportation to get home
- Plan to stay at a friend, relative or hosts’ house
- Download rideshare apps and save a taxi company’s phone number in your contacts at least a day before the festivities
Serve non-alcoholic drinks
If you’re hosting this year’s 4th of July party, provide your guests with plenty of non-alcoholic options.
A quick internet search will provide hundreds of recipes for “mocktails” that you can serve your guests. A mixture of juice, tonic water and other non-alcoholic ingredients, mocktails are the perfect refreshing drink for a hot summer day. You can also find plenty of non-alcoholic beer options at your local grocery or liquor store.
Most beer that’s labeled non-alcoholic, low alcohol or alcohol free does have a small amount of alcohol. Beers that have .5% ABV (alcohol by volume) or less can be labeled as non-alcoholic. You may hear these beers called “NA beer.” For comparison, common light beers contain around 4.5% ABV or more.
Can a person become drunk from NA beer?
You might be wondering, can you get drunk from drinking non-alcoholic beer? The simple answer is no. While non-alcoholic beers do contain alcohol, the amount is so little that you will not get drunk. Your body processes the small amount of alcohol almost as fast as you drink the beer. However, you should be aware that medications or medical conditions can affect this outcome due to the fact that some medications or conditions can result in a higher sensitivity to alcohol.
Can an ignition interlock device (IID) detect non-alcoholic beer?
One thing to note is that if you have an ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle, you should not drink NA beer before you provide a breath sample. Even low levels of alcohol can be detected by an ignition interlock device. This can result in a failed breath sample and cause your device to go into a lockout. Remember, you are responsible for all samples submitted to your device, and all samples including failed samples are reported to your state monitoring authority.
Intoxalock Can Help!
If you need assistance in scheduling an ignition interlock device in your vehicle, call Intoxalock customer support at (833) 623-0200. We have 24/7 customer service and over 3,500 service center locations across the U.S. to serve our customers. We are here to help!