Super Bowl 50 Extra Patrols

Game Plan for Super Bowl 50: Are You Drinking, or Are You Driving? This is NOT the Time to “Call an Option”

The Super Bowl is America’s most watched national sporting event. On Super Bowl 50 Sunday Feb. 7, there will be lots of game day socializing that may include drinking. That’s why the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Missoula Police Department, along with the Montana Highway Patrol and the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office, are urging football fans to call the play now: drinking OR driving, not both. If you plan on drinking on Super Bowl Sunday, designate a sober driver to get you home safely.

NHTSA’s Fans Don’t Let Fans Drive Drunk campaign encourages people to make plans that will prevent them from getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after drinking. Driving impaired could result in injury or death for drivers, passengers and others on the road.

19524079-mmmainAccording to data from NHTSA, in 2014 9,967 people were killed in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes in the United States—31 percent of all vehicle crash fatalities in the nation. The numbers go even higher on weekends. (There were 5,447 alcohol-impaired driving fatalities, making up 40 percent of all fatalities that occurred during weekends.) A driver is considered alcohol- impaired with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher, the set limit in all states. This Feb. 7, don’t become a tragic Super Bowl stat.

“Drunk driving is completely preventable,” said Sgt. Greg Amundsen. “All it takes is a little planning. We want fans to remember that it’s a choice. Drink or drive—but never do both.” For those who plan to drink, leave your keys at home. Designate a sober driver, whether it’s a friend, relative, taxi, ride share or public transportation. Use NHTSA’s new SaferRide mobile app. The app helps people who have been drinking get a safe ride home; it helps users call a taxi or a friend and identifies their locations so they can be picked up. The app is available for Android devices on Google Play and Apple devices on the iTunes store.

For those who plan to drive, refrain from any alcohol. Instead, enjoy the game with food and non-alcoholic drinks. Being a sober, designated driver is a key role on Super Bowl Sunday. You might just save a life.

If you’re hosting a Super Bowl 50 party, designate a responsible driver before the game begins. One way to thank your designated driver is by tweeting us their name during Super Bowl 50, which will appear on NHTSA’s Wall of Fame. Designated drivers can tweet us their names themselves, too.