Officials urge Super Bowl party safety
As people put the final touches on their Super Bowl parties and plans, how to get home safely is often an overlooked detail, and it could have deadly results.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 40 percent of all traffic fatalities that occur in the U.S. on Super Bowl Sunday are alcohol-related.
AAA Mid-Atlantic is urging Super Bowl fans to prepare for the night of partying by coming up with a transportation plan.
"Drinking and driving is not a game - it's a deadly combination," said Tracy Noble, spokesperson for AAA Mid-Atlantic. "So make the right play. Before you stock up on the wings, nachos and beer, make it a point to plan how your guests will get home safely. If you're attending a party away from home, be a safe and sober driver."
Noble suggests party-goers either select a designated driver, use a ride-sharing service, call a cab, or simply not drink.
"People need to know when enough is enough," she said. "There's lots of alternatives that you don't have to wind up a statistic."
But, the onus also falls on the party host. Many are distracted with purchasing the food and booze and getting their home set up for the party, and this issue may not be on their radar.
"How people may be getting home or policing their friends because they assume they are responsible adults," Noble explained. "If you are hosting a party, do not let your friends leave your house intoxicated."
AAA is offering tips for party hosts to be responsible. They suggest offering food and non-alcoholic beverages, make sure guests designate a sober driver or arrange ride-sharing, cutting alcohol towards the end of the game to allow guests to sober up, or even taking extreme measures if the situation calls for it.
"If that means taking keys from a friend or relative, that's what needs to happen because the last thing anybody wants is that phone call saying that there has been a tragedy," Noble said.