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Virginia Highway Safety Office News Releases

Friday, February 3, 2012
Media Contact: Pam Goheen
Department of Motor Vehicles
(804) 367-1519

Designate a Sober Driver Before Super Bowl Kick-Off
DMV Encourages Fans to Act Responsibly Behind the Wheel

RICHMOND - The Super Bowl is America's most popular national sporting event. All across the country, millions of people gather to socialize and watch the big game. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles encourages Super Bowl XLVI fans to be responsible while cheering on their favorite team February 5.

"Driving while impaired could result in a loss of your driver's license or even the loss of your life or someone else's," said DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb, the Governor's Highway Safety Representative. "On Super Bowl Sunday, make it a team effort to keep yourself and your loved ones safe. If you plan on driving, plan not to drink alcohol."

Holcomb recommended having the numbers for local cab companies handy before the Super Bowl celebration begins, just in case a sober ride is needed. Always buckle up - it's the best defense against drunk drivers.

On February 6, 2011, last year's Super Bowl date, there were 14 alcohol-related crashes and 11 alcohol-related injuries on Virginia's roadways. In 2010, there were 19 alcohol-related crashes and three alcohol-related injuries on Super Bowl Sunday. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, every day, 32 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver, which amounts to one death every 45 minutes. The annual cost of alcohol-related crashes totals more than $51 billion. In Virginia, alcohol-related motor vehicle crashes result in average charges of $35,000 for 5.5 days in the hospital.

"To prevent a tragedy from occurring on Super Bowl Sunday, designate a sober driver, and take responsibility for your friends if you are having the party," Holcomb said. "If you don't have a designated driver, ask a sober friend for a ride home. Or, call a cab, friend, or family member to come and get you. Be prepared to just stay where you are and sleep it off until you are sober."

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