The National Drug Council, the Ecay Business & Web Directory and dms Broadcasting in conjunction with The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service have launched an anti drink driving campaign.
This year, the message is simple: Don’t Drink and Drive, either designate a driver or take a taxi home.
‘We don’t tolerate drink driving in the Cayman Islands, and we don’t accept any excuses, including Christmas celebrations and festivities,’ Police Commissioner Stuart Kernohan said in a press release.
‘By and large Cayman residents drive responsibly, but sadly there remains a small hard core of irresponsible drivers who believe they can combine alcohol and driving, despite all the horrific evidence to the contrary. In order to protect other road users we will be using road blocks and stop-checks. Please heed this warning.
‘Drink driving wrecks lives, it can result in you being arrested, losing your licence and sadly, on occasions, being responsible for taking someone’s life. My question to the Cayman community is: could you live with that on your conscience?’
This year the campaign will target people with a two pronged approach giving people alternatives to driving after drinking. Firstly, it makes it easy for people to either flag down or call a white top taxi to take them home safely and secondly it recommends the Designated Driver Programme.
‘In the past many people, particularly females have been afraid to flag down a taxi late at night and have sometimes risked drinking and driving home. However, now they need not fear as all the taxis participating in the program are official taxis licensed by the Public Transport Board and are clearly identified with their taxi ID number, thus reassuring passengers that it’s safe to flag a taxi at night,’ said Hilary McKenzie-Cahill, managing director of Ecay.
‘We have printed 2000 campaign posters and over 10,000 business cards, which will highlight the telephone numbers of over 100 taxi drivers and these will be placed in restaurants, bars, nightclubs, supermarkets and gas stations island-wide, thus making it easy to call a taxi wherever you are.’
As part of this campaign dms Broadcasting has donated 100 free Anti Drink Driving public service announcements on its four radio stations to help make a difference this Christmas and New Year. The new StreetSkill commercial has also launched in the cinema and on the television encouraging drivers to be responsible.
Cathy Chesnut, CEO of the National Drug Council said, ‘The second part of the campaign is our Designated Driver Programme. We have over 35 participating restaurants, bars and clubs where people who identify themselves as a designated driver to their server can receive free non-alcoholic drinks all evening and a free purple wrist band bracelet. It’s a great program and we are thankful to the participating establishments for doing their part in cutting down drink driving this holiday season.’