We generally talk about doctors, hospitals, and nursing homes, but we want to talk about football today. Not just football, but the Super Bowl, which is scheduled for this coming Sunday, Feb. 1. We aren't figuring odds or talking team strategy. We aren't weighing in on deflate-gate, either. We want our readers to celebrate, to gather together, to cheer and to weep in frustration, and then to be sure they are sober before they get behind the wheels of their cars—in other words, to avoid drunk driving.A recent study about drunk driving accidents in Los Angeles is a good lesson in why we need to be especially careful on the roads this Sunday. The researchers found that the number of accidents involving alcohol rose dramatically on Super Bowl Sunday when compared with other "normal" Sundays during January and February. In Los Angeles County, the increase was 57 percent; in San Diego County, it was an alarming 117 percent.
Preventing Drunk Driving Accidents in New York
New Yorkers are not as tied to their vehicles as people on the other coast are, but that doesn't make us immune. Every local paper, it seems, features a dozen ads for bars and restaurants offering craft beer specials during the game. Let's hope they're offering food, too, and that they allow their patrons to drink plenty of water—and, perhaps, that they reward designated drivers somehow for their particular sacrifice.If you are in Manhattan or the boroughs, or if you travel to Connecticut or New Jersey for your celebration, remember everything you learned in Driver's Ed about drinking and driving.
- Make sure your group has a designated driver.
- Don't be afraid to take away a friend's car keys.
- Eat plenty of healthy food and drink plenty of water over the course of the evening.
- Have money or credit cards available so you can cab it home.
- If you're hosting, stop serving alcohol well before the game ends.
- Offer your couch to a friend who shouldn't be driving.
Who knows what the weather will be like. And who can say, really, how long the game will last. It isn't easy to plan ahead for all contingencies. It is, however, important to do everything you can to keep the roads safe for you, your loved ones, and everyone else out there.Data Source: Los Angeles Times, "Sunday is the Super Bowl of drunk driving, crash data show," Jerry Hirsch, Jan. 27, 2015