STOP-DWI Campaign Will Include Underage Drinking Enforcement, Increased Patrols and Sobriety Checkpoints
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the New York State Police and local law enforcement agencies statewide will crack down on impaired and reckless driving during Super Bowl weekend. The STOP-DWI campaign will include underage drinking enforcement, along with increased patrols and sobriety checkpoints to deter, identify, and arrest impaired drivers. The enforcement initiative is funded by the Governor's Traffic Safety Committee.
"The Super Bowl is one of the most popular events of the year, and we encourage New Yorkers to enjoy it responsibly," Governor Cuomo said. "If you will be drinking, don't get behind the wheel. New York has zero tolerance for impaired driving, and State Police will be out in force this weekend to ensure everyone has a safe ride home."
While STOP-DWI efforts across New York have led to significant reductions in the number of drinking and driving fatalities, too many lives are still being lost because of crashes caused by impaired drivers. During the 2017 Super Bowl campaign, State Police arrested 110 people for impaired driving and issued more than 4,098 total tickets. The campaign will be promoted on various message boards on highways across the state, including the New York State Thruway, running from Saturday, February 3, until 4 a.m. on Monday, February 5.
State Police Superintendent George P. Beach II said, "Make the winning decision on Super Bowl weekend and don't get behind the wheel if you've been drinking. Driving while impaired can result in tragic consequences for you, your passengers and others on the road. State Police will be visible this weekend looking for impaired and distracted drivers. Those celebrating the big game this weekend should do so safely by planning ahead or driving sober. Together, we can save lives and prevent serious injuries."
DMV Executive Deputy Commissioner and Acting Governor's Traffic Safety Committee Chair Terri Egan said, "Super Bowl Sunday is an exciting and fun American tradition, and we want everyone to enjoy great football with family and friends. Sadly, those good times are too often marred by senseless tragedy caused by impaired drivers. If you are going to drink, do not get behind the wheel. Have a plan for a designated driver or take advantage of a taxi or ride-sharing service. There is no excuse for driving while you are impaired by alcohol or drugs."
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2016, 10,497 people were killed in alcohol-impaired crashes. Drivers should remember that they are putting not only their lives, but the lives of others, in jeopardy when they choose to drink and drive. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 28 people die each day in alcohol-related vehicle crashes. That's one person every 50 minutes.
If you are hosting a party, you're the team captain! Designate a responsible driver now to help your guests get home safely.
- Ask all of your guests to designate their sober drivers in advance, or help them arrange ridesharing with sober drivers. If you don't drink, offer to drive guests home;
- Serve plenty of food and non-alcoholic beverages at the party;
- Stop serving alcohol at the end of the third quarter—this is a good time to serve coffee and dessert; and
- Sign up online for a ridesharing service or keep the phone numbers of local cab companies on hand and take the keys away from any guests who are thinking of driving after drinking.
Remember, if you serve a guest alcohol and he or she gets in a crash that night, you could be held liable.
If an underage person drinks and drives, the parent or guardian can be legally liable for any damage, injury or death caused by the underage driver.
The Governor's Traffic Safety Committee and the New York State STOP-DWI Foundation "Have a Plan" mobile app, is available for Apple, Droid and Windows smartphones. The app enables New Yorkers to locate and call a taxi service and program a designated driver list. It also provides information on DWI laws and penalties, as well as ways to report a suspected impaired driver.