ST. LOUIS, MO. (KTVI) – The night before Thanksgiving is becoming known as ‘Blackout Wednesday’ because of the danger on U.S. Highways.
It begins the deadliest 4-day holiday driving weekend in America.
St. Louis was buzzing again this year; bars packed with people coming home for Thanksgiving; heading out to catch up with friends and family, maybe have a drink or two, then take a big risk driving home.
But a designated driver service takes the away the risk.
‘We`re going to be out for the duration today. It`s the day before Thanksgiving, this is serious,’ laughed Kerry Bryan, out with friends at I-Tap, in Chesterfield.
It was serious fun but with seriously sobering statistics: with more than a third of the fatal accidents on this deadly weekend involve an alcohol impaired driver.
‘A couple of holidays ago, I just caught myself, I drove home and i got up the next morning I thought, `well, that was stupid`,’ said Kevin Tierney, a customer of the service called, The Scooter Guy.
The Scooter Guy offered free rides Wednesday. Captain Morgan rum covered the cost as part of the promotion.
Here`s how it works: a scooter driver comes to where you are, takes your keys, folds up the scooter, puts it into your trunk or hatch, drives you home, then takes off on the scooter. They also work in teams using cars instead of scooters.
‘You go out in your own car and we dispatch a driver to take you home in your own car. So the next morning you wake up, you`re ready for your turkey, and your car`s in the driveway,’ said Michael Oliver, of The Scooter Guy.
‘I think that`s really cool, because then my car is there in the morning, and that`s the best part. Cabs, you pay a lot of money, but then you have to cab back to your car,’ Bryan said.
Tierney became a repeat customer after it finally dawned on him the risk was too great. Also, if he was out having a good time with friends or family, even if he just had a drink or two, he was not in the best position to be assessing that risk.
‘People will say, `how do I know if I `m drunk enough? ` Odds are if you`re going out to have a drink then you shouldn`t be driving home afterwards. So give us a call, we`ll get you to drive you home,’ Oliver said.
‘You don`t have to feel like an idiot the next morning, saying, `why did I do that? Why did I endanger everything I have, just to come home by myself`. It was crazy?’ Tierney said.
Normal prices range from $25-$45 for people who pay a $100 yearly membership fee.
The cost for non-members is $65 per ride. Oliver said you can always carpool with friends and split the cost.