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January 29, 2008 - Designated drivers play MVP role at Super Bowl partiesContact:
Nikki Klemmer (517) 333-5304
Whether the New England Patriots or the New York Giants win Super Bowl XLII, one thing is certain: the designated driver will be the most valuable player when it comes to getting fans home safely. The Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning (OHSP) encourages fans watching the big game at parties or sports bars to make sure they designate a sober driver before kick-off.
If your game plan includes drinking, make sure you have a designated driver in your line-up," OHSP director Michael L. Prince said. "Watch out for your friends. No matter who you're rooting for, fans don't let fans drive drunk."
During Super Bowl Sunday last year, 190 people were arrested in Michigan for drunk driving, according to the Michigan State Police, Criminal Justice Information Center. There were four fatal crashes, one of which involved alcohol.
The number of had-been-drinking fatal crashes on Super Bowl weekend tends to be higher than an average weekend. An average of 4.3 had-been-drinking fatal crashes was reported that weekend from 2001-2006 in Michigan, compared to an average of 4.1 for all weekends.
OHSP offers the following tips for a fun and safe Super Bowl.
If hosting a Super Bowl party:
Make sure guests designate their sober drivers before kick-off.
Recognize designated drivers by reserving them a great spot to watch the game, letting them have first pass at the buffet table or making sure they have plenty of non-alcoholic beverage options.
Stop serving alcohol at the end of the third quarter.
If attending a Super Bowl party or watching the game at a bar or restaurant:
Designate a sober driver before the party begins.
Program numbers for local cab companies in your cell phone.
Reward your designated driver by offering to pay for a tank of gas or their food tab or to be the designated driver the next night out.
Always buckle up - it's your best defense against impaired drivers.