WATCH: The Easthampton Police Department released the video above, which is a reminder that driving impaired is a serious matter.
BOSTON (MASS.GOV) – The Highway Safety Division of the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security offers these tips to New England Patriots fans who will be hosting parties and possibly celebrating the team’s big win on Sunday:
- Just like Coach B, have a game plan. Before you head out, find a sober driver—someone who will not drink at all, and will get you home safely.
- Make sure your designated driver is actually sober. If he or she decided to drink unexpectedly, call a cab, get a ride share service, or call someone else who you know hasn’t been drinking.
- Do what it takes to keep a friend who’s been drinking from driving – take the keys, call a cab, etc.
- Belt up. When you’re out, make sure you—and your driver—wear a seat belt. It’s your best defense against other impaired drivers.
- Stay the night if you don’t have a safe ride home.
- Know that drunk driving is expensive, in addition to being dangerous. Drunk drivers face jail time, the loss of their license and multiple expenses, including higher insurance rates, attorney fees, court costs, car towing and repairs, and lost wages due to time off from work. The average DUI court case costs the defendant approximately $10,000.
- Take your job seriously. While at the party, refrain from any alcoholic beverages. People are relying on you.
- Brag on social media using the hashtag #designateddriver. There will be designated drivers at parties all over town. Make yourselves known.
- Always buckle your seat belt and don’t start the car until all passengers’ seat belts are buckled.
- Remember: Patriots Fans Don’t Let Other Patriots Fans Drive Drunk. If someone you know has been drinking and tries to drive, take their keys and help them get home safely. They’ll thank you later.
- Know that your most important job is to make sure your guests get home safely.
- Ask your guests to identify their sober drivers in advance.
- Encourage your drinking guests to pace themselves, eat food, and drink plenty of water.
- Serve a variety of non-alcoholic drinks.
- Do not serve alcohol to minors. If an underage person drinks and drives, the person who served the alcohol can be held liable for any resulting damage, injury, or death. You could face jail time if you host a party where alcohol is served to people under the age of 21.
Massachusetts Impaired Driving Data
- From 2013 to 2014, alcohol impaired driving fatalities increased 14 percent (125 to 143).
- From 2010-2014, 77 percent of impaired drivers in fatal crashes were men.
- From 2010-2014, 46 percent of all alcohol-related driver fatalities were ages 21 to 34.
Nationally in the US, there were 10,265 people killed in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes, accounting for 29 percent of all crash fatalities.