January 31, 2014 10:28 ET

Drunk Driving Means Costly Penalties

Designate a Sober Driver This Super Bowl Sunday

KANSAS CITY, MO--(Marketwired - Jan 31, 2014) - Super Bowl Sunday -- It may be one of America's most anticipated and exciting sporting events, but if alcohol and driving mix, it can also be a costly and dangerous one. That's why law enforcement agencies through the area are focusing on getting impaired drivers off the road. Highway safety officials, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Techniques for Effective Alcohol Management (TEAM) Coalition and the National Football League (NFL), have joined forces to remind everyone to designate a sober driver.

Impaired driving carries the possibility of fines, increased insurance rates, jail time, injury and death. It's simply not worth the risk. Law enforcement throughout the area, will be on the lookout for impaired drivers and reminds you that if you are found to be impaired, you will be arrested.

According to NHTSA, in 2011, 9,878 people were killed in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes. These crashes were 31 percent more likely to occur on weekends than on weekdays.*

Whether attending the game, watching at a bar or hosting a party, remember that Fans Don't Let Fans Drive Drunk. Before choosing to drink, choose your team's MVP -- a sober designated driver. NHTSA offers these additional safety tips:

If you're attending a Super Bowl party or watching the game at a sports bar or restaurant:

  • Designate your sober driver, or plan another way to get home safely before the party begins.
  • If you don't have a designated driver, then ask a sober friend for a ride home; call a cab, friend, or family member to come and get you; or just stay for the night.
  • Use your community's sober ride program.

If you're hosting a Super Bowl party:

  • Make sure all your guests designate a sober driver in advance, or arrange for alternate transportation to ensure they get home safely.
  • Serve food and include non-alcoholic beverages at the party.
  • Stop serving alcohol at the end of the third quarter of the game and begin serving coffee and dessert.
  • Keep the numbers for local cab companies handy, and take the keys away from anyone who has had too much to drink.

And remember, your seat belt is your best defense against a drunk driver in a crash.

*Note: Weekend - Friday 6 p.m. to Monday 5:59 a.m.

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