AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — “When will you learn that it’s not ok?,” said David Elizalde, president of Andrea’s Project, a non-profit organization working to raise awareness about the dangers of drunk driving. “That you’re not only risking your life, you’re risking other people’s life?”
Elizalde is passionate about changing the mindset surrounding drinking and driving.
“In the last three years, over 14 people have lost their lives that I know of that has devastated families,” he emphasized.
He knows first hand the devastation drinking and driving can cause. He lost his daughter Andrea, who the non-profit is named after, on Easter Sunday in 2019.
“She let a kid that was drinking drive her vehicle, and he lost control and it took my daughter’s life. She had aspirations to become a surgeon, we were talking about college, she was just getting started man,” he explained.
Elizalde took the pain from that day and turned it into purpose, forming Andrea’s Project, “to change people’s perception on how dangerous drinking and driving can be,” he said.
One of the ways of changing the perception, changing the way laws around drunk driving are enforced.
“On a city level, we’ve passed an ordinance that will hold families responsible that are giving alcohol to young kids, and it’s the first ordinance that doesn’t involve a moving violation,” he told KAMR.
Amarillo ranks second in the state in fatalities and serious injuries from alcohol-related crashes, and Elizalde says one way to reduce that number, is for people to stop and think.
“You’ve gotta think about your choices, because drinking and driving is a choice made sober,” he said.
But, if you’re out and you’ve had too much to drink, “806-678-6047, Andrea’s Project will make sure you get home. If you’re worried about your car being towed, we’ll call a wrecker to take care of that,” he said emphatically.
He said it’s a lot of work, but worth it, because, “I wanted to make sure no other family went through what we went through, and what we continue to go through.”
For more information on Andrea’s Project, click here.