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Drunk driving accidents increase on Super Bowl Sunday

The Super Bowl is almost here. Those watching the Super Bowl should enjoy the festivities but be aware of the dangers on the road after the game.

Every year, Super Bowl Sunday sees a significant number of drunk driving accidents in Texas and throughout the country. On the day of last year's Super Bowl, the Texas Department of Transportation reported 100 alcohol-related car accidents in Texas. These accidents caused four fatalities and 33 serious injuries. A Texas DOT report from 2009 found that 45 percent of people in Texas drank alcohol while watching the Super Bowl and then drove themselves home.

To address the dangers of drunk driving and to prevent drunk driving accidents from happening this year, the Texas DOT has started a campaign called "Know When to P.A.S.S." It is aimed at raising awareness of drunk driving and encourages people to plan for a sober ride, especially on Super Bowl Sunday.

Texas DOT officials said that drunk driving accidents are more common during the Super Bowl because many people go out to watch the game and drink alcohol. While many do not plan on getting drunk, they do and do not have a sober driver to get home.

Drunk driving is not only illegal, it is very dangerous and contributes to thousands of fatal car accidents every year. Safety experts recommend that people throwing Super Bowl parties can take steps to prevent guests from driving drunk. Tips for people throwing a party include server plenty of food, serve non-alcohol beverages, stop serving alcohol before the party ends, arrange transportation for people if necessary.

Drivers on the road who suspect another driver of being intoxicated should inform the police and drive safely around the other vehicle. The Super Bowl is meant to be a celebration with family and friends. This weekend, make safe choices and you should get home safely after the game.

Source: The Gilmer Mirror, "Don't drink and drive 'Know When to P.A.S.S.'" Jan. 31, 2013

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