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We Can All Keep Washington Roads Safe by Planning Ahead for the Big Game

WTSC reminds football fans to make a game plan to get a sober ride home

OLYMPIA — The Washington Traffic Safety Commission (WTSC) is reminding Washingtonians to plan their post-watch party route home on February 12.

Most people in Washington (78 percent) don’t drive after drinking. Still, Washington road deaths are predicted to have reached a 30-year high in 2022 with a projected 745 fatalities. More than half of the fatal crashes that occur involve an impaired driver.

Jack Fletcher knows the dangers of impaired driving all too well. In July 2014, he was hit by a driver whose BAC was twice the legal limit. “When I woke up in the hospital, the first thing I remembered was that I’d had a scholarship to become a firefighter; after being hit by a drunk driver, I had to relearn to swallow my own food, I had to relearn how to walk. Before the crash, I was going to be set.’”

This year, the Washington State legislature is considering lowering the blood alcohol concentration limit for operating a motor vehicle from 0.08 to 0.05 percent. Utah passed a similar law in 2017 and found its fatal crash rate dropped by nearly 20 percent, while its overall fatality rate declined by 18.3 percent.

“DUI activity tends to rise around holidays and special events,” said Mark McKechnie, WTSC External Relations Director. “This Super Bowl Sunday, we’re asking everyone to make the right call and intervene to stop friends and relatives from driving impaired. Even if you think you’re ok to drive, play it safe.”

When in a situation to intervene, 81 percent of Washingtonians say they will take action to prevent someone from driving impaired. The WTSC offers a few simple plays that can prevent someone from getting behind the wheel while drunk or high:

· Pre-plan the trip home by scheduling a rideshare or cab pick-up

· Use public transportation

· Designate a sober driver before the game starts

· Arrange for family or friends to stay the night after the game

· Call 911 if you see or suspect someone is driving impaired


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