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Increased DUI Risk on Super Bowl Sunday

Before you don your Broncos or Panthers garb and head to a Super Bowl party this weekend, be sure you’ve made arrangements to get home safely. The risk of getting into a drunk-driving accident significantly increases on Super Bowl Sunday, according to research by the Automobile Club of Southern California.
Statewide, DUI crashes are 77% more common on Super Bowl Sunday compared to other Sundays in January and February, while Los Angeles sees a 57% increase in alcohol-related crashes on game day. The analysis, collected from California Highway Patrol data from 2009 to 2013, also reported 294 alcohol-related fatal and injury accidents on Super Bowl Sunday in California and 77 in Los Angeles County in the last five years.
“This is, unfortunately, an incredibly deadly day on our roads and highways,” said California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. “It’s critically important that people don’t drink and drive. You endanger yourself, you endanger your loved ones and you endanger others.”
A growth in Super Bowl festivities, from house parties to bar and restaurant promotional events, could attribute to the spike in alcohol-related incidents. For revelers and hosts alike, responsible planning can make a life-saving difference.
“We want everybody to have a good time, but we want them to do so responsibly. If you don’t, there could be tragic consequences.” said Chris O’Quinn, assistant chief of the CHP’s Southern Division. “We will be out in force looking for those who make the wrong choice.”
To ensure the safety of drivers and passengers this Super Bowl Sunday, the Auto Club encourages fans to designate a sober driver in advance, or use a taxi, ride service or public transportation to get home after the game. Party hosts are encouraged to serve plenty of water, non-alcoholic beverages and starchy foods to slow alcohol absorption, and to take car keys from guests who are under the influence.
If all else fails, AAA is offering its Tipsy Tow safe ride service for drivers who are too impaired to get behind the wheel. From 6 p.m. Sunday to 6 a.m. Monday, drivers can call 1-800-400-4AAA for a free ride and tow home up to seven miles.
“Drivers and passengers should be aware of the high crash risk from drinking and driving associated with Super Bowl Sunday,” said Auto Club Chief Executive Officer Robert Bouttier. “We know that someone will lose the game. No one should lose a life.”

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