The Designated Driver Program

As members of law enforcement, we see all to often the tragic effects impaired driving has on each of our communities.  Lives are taken in drunk driving crashes that could have easily been prevented.  The Designated Driver Program is a voluntary program in Plymouth County.
It is a cooperative effort between the Plymouth County District Attorney’s Office, the local Police Chiefs, and the licensed alcohol servers across Plymouth County.

Designated Driver Communities

The Designated Driver Program has been established in the following communities.  The Designated Driver program is not meant to endorse any underage drinking and is not to be used for minors.

  • Hingham
  • Marshfield
  • Norwell
  • Rockland
  • Scituate

About the Program

The program, which began in Hingham, MA is designed to raise awareness to the problem of drinking and driving.  It is a cooperative effort aimed at reducing the number of impaired drivers on the road, which will effectively reduce preventable deaths and injuries caused by impaired driving.  The program promotes a continuous dialogue between local establishments, the local police department and the District Attorney’s Office.

What is a Designated Driver?

A Designated Driver is a person, who at the beginning of the night, agrees not to drink any alcoholic beverages during their evening out.  It does not mean choosing the “most sober” or the “least drunk” at the end of the night to be designated to drive.  The Designated Driver accepts the responsibility to ensure that the other members in their party, especially those who are impaired, are transported home safely.

How the Program Works

Participation is voluntary and controlled by the private business.  The program is easy to implement.   Each business agrees to provide free non-alcoholic beverages to patrons who identify themselves as the Designated Driver to their server.  They must be in a party of at least two people and not consume any alcoholic drinks that evening.  If the Designated Driver orders an alcoholic beverage, or is seen consuming an alcoholic beverage, the Designated Driver status is revoked and the non-alcoholic beverages previously served will be charged at the full price.


According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association, “An average of one alcohol-impaired-driving fatality occurred every 48 minutes in 2017.”

(Traffic Safety Facts- 2017 DATA, NHTSA November 2018)
      • “In 2017, there were 10,874 fatalities in motor vehicle traffic crashes involving a driver with a BAC of .08 g/dL or higher; this was 29 percent of total traffic fatalities for the year.” (Note: It is illegal in every state to drive with a BAC of .08g/dL or higher.)”
      • “Of the traffic fatalities in 2017 among children 14 and younger, 19% occurred in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes.”
      • “The 21-24-year old age group had the highest percentage (27%) of drivers with BACs of .08 g/dL or higher in fatal crashes compared to other age groups in 2017.”
      • “The percentage of drivers with BACs of .08 g/dL or higher in fatal crashes in 2017 was highest for fatalities involving motorcycle riders (27%), compared to passenger cars (21%), light trucks (20%), and large trucks (3%).”
      • “The rate of alcohol impairment among drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2017 was 3.6 times higher at night than during the day.”
      • “In 2017, among the 10,874 alcohol-impaired-driving fatalities, 68% (7,368) were in crashes in which at least one driver had a BAC of .15 g/dL or higher.”
Traffic Safety Facts, 2017 Data-NHTSA, November 2018

Click here to view Traffic Safety Facts from NHTSA