In the news recently, stories of children dying in DWI accidents are much too common. In one instance, a mother carrying five children in her van allegedly drove drunk down the interstate the wrong way, hitting a car head on and killing eight people. In another story, a drunk mom driving a vanload of girls attending a sleepover flipped her vehicle, killing one girl and seriously injuring a number of others. How can parents keep their children safe from getting into a car with a drunk driver?

· Teach your children to recognize the signs of being impaired by alcohol. Be sure they understand that grown-ups that are stumbling or slurring their words have a problem and are either drunk or need medical attention. Be sure they know not to get into a car if the driver has alcohol on their breath – and that getting in the car could be becoming involved in a car accident.

· Teach your children to say no. Sometimes it can be hard, especially for a younger child, to refuse to get into a car with an adult. Practice with them – teach them to politely refuse to get in the car and not to back down.

· Make sure your child can reach you at any time. Teach your child your home and cell phone numbers – and make sure that they either have a cell phone to use or know how to use a public phone.

· Know where your child is. In the second DWI case above, many of the parents of the children did not know the mom who was drinking and were not aware their children would be attending a party that included alcohol. Make sure you know where your children are going, what is going to take place, and who your children will be driving with.