Law enforcement agencies across the United States are preparing for the Super Bowl by increasing DUI patrols and urging sports fans everywhere not to drive drunk. Sunday is expected to be one of the most dangerous days on the nation's roads. In California alone, historically, there's a 77 percent increase in alcohol-related crashes on the day of the big game.
“We encourage everyone to make a plan -- designate a sober driver ahead of time, contact a ride-sharing service, or use a taxi or public transportation,” Auto Club of Southern California Chief Executive Robert Bouttier told the Los Angeles Times. Police forces in Oregon, Indiana, New York and other states have announced they would increase the number of DUI checkpoints on Sunday. In 2012, 43 percent of all traffic fatalities on Super Bowl Sunday and the next morning were caused by drunk driving, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
"Drunk driving is completely preventable,” New Jersey prosecutor Geoffrey Soriano told NJ.com. “All it takes is a little planning. We want fans to remember that it’s a choice. Drink or drive -- but never do both.”
People who plan to drink alcohol during their Super Bowl celebrations should make arrangements ahead of time so that they do not wind up driving while intoxicated. According to some tips from the NHTSA, they could leave their keys at home or pace themselves and stop drinking after the third quarter. If inebriated fans find themselves in need of transportation, they have options. Uber teamed up with Mothers Against Drunk Driving to run a fundraising campaign. The car service will donate $1 to MADD for every trip between 3 p.m. and midnight on Sunday when users enter the promo code THINKANDRIDE.
AAA clubs in some locations are also offering safe rides home as part of their tipsy tow programs. Below is a list of organizations that will give you a free ride on Sunday:
- AAA Arizona (statewide)
- AAA Auto Club Group (statewide in Florida, Georgia and Tennessee)
- Auto Club of Southern California
- AAA Northern California (in all club territories)
- AAA Nevada (statewide)
- AAA Utah (statewide)