The Super Bowl, DUIs and Staying Safe on the Road

Superbowl XLVIII

Super Bowl 56 is just days away and the Los Angeles Rams will face the Cincinnati Bengals at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. The Bengal’s path to the Super Bowl included beating Nevada’s hometown team, the Las Vegas Raiders. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Rams’ path to victory involved beating their archrival San Francisco 49ers, another hometown favorite.

While the Super Bowl isn’t an official holiday, it has become an event ingrained in American culture and the annual Sunday games are watched at bars, house parties, and casinos across the nation. In Las Vegas and Reno, many flock to casinos to put down their bets on who will win. While these gatherings are fun and exciting, alcohol is often present, resulting in the chance for high levels of intoxication often leading to DUI crashes. The following are some statistics regarding DUI crashes on Super Bowl Sunday:

  1. Recent studies show that Super Bowl is one of the biggest drinking days in the year, and DUI incidents go up 22 percent on game day. In addition, more DUI injuries occur on Super Bowl Sundays than on any other day of the year, excluding New Year’s Eve. [1]
  2. A study by the Automobile Club of Southern California showed that Super Bowl Sunday was the most dangerous Sunday on roads in January and February, with a 41 percent increase in car accidents than an average Sunday in either month .
  3. A report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration showed that 33% of traffic deaths during the Super Bowl in 2016 involved DUI drivers.
  4. BACtrack, a company that created smartphone alcohol breath tests, showed that users’ recorded an average blood alcohol level of .091 percent on Super Bowl Sunday. This is a little less than the 0.094 average on New Year’s Eve. In Nevada, the BAC limit is 0.08 and .04 for commercial drivers.
  5. Those in Los Angeles and Cincinnati have more to worry about— statistically, residents in the home of the teams playing are the most likely to see spiks in DUIs. For example, in 2015, when the Patriots played, DUI violations were double the rest of the country in New England. [2]

Making Good Driving Decisions

In the moment, getting behind the wheel might not seem like a big deal, and you may try and rationalize your decision because you only had a “little” to drink. However, DUIs have severe impacts, the most severe being death. In Nevada, if found guilty of driving under the influence, on the first offense, you must spend no less than two days in jail or community service for 48 hours. In addition, a driver may have to pay ticket fees, testing fees, and possibly the fee for counseling. If the BAC is more than the 0.18 percent, the defendant may also have to install a breath interlock device for a minimum of 185 days and up to three years.

A second offense is still a misdemeanor, however minimum sentences increase to 10 days or ten days of house arrest. If the offender is under 21, they must also participate in some rehabilitation program and risk losing their license for a period of time.

A third offense, if within seven ears of the second offense, is a felony and can carry a sentence of up to six years in jail. Fines also increase to $5,000 and if harm is caused due to the incident, the offender can face up to a 20-year sentence. The DMV can also suspend a license for up to one year on a second offense and up to three years for a third offense, however this decision is up to the criminal prosecutors.

What to Do If You are a Victim of a DUI Accident?

After the accident, pull over and ensure all parties involved are Ok and receive proper medical attention. Even if you are not seriously injured, do not leave the scene until law enforcement arrive, so you can speak with them regarding the incident and they can put your observations in the accident report. In addition, always exchange contact information and insurance information with the other party. Take pictures of the damage the incident may have caused on the vehicle and obtain an accident report from the police if possible.  A accident attorney in Nevada can assist with obtaining an accident report if you have issues obtaining from the police or sheriff department.

Fault in a DUI incident can be determined as any other accident. If the drunk driver causes the accident, they will have to pay for the damages caused as well as face the charges related to driving under the influence.

However, sometimes the drunk party is not responsible for the accident. While the driver who caused the accident will also be held liable for the damages caused by the accident, the drunk driver will not be cleared for wrongdoing. DUIs are illegal and the driver will face legal charges and the consequences listed above still apply. [3] [1]https://www.forbes.com/sites/andrewbender/2015/01/31/super-bowl-and-dui-six-facts-about-one-of-americas-drunkest-days/?sh=6a134c2f37ed

[2]https://www.ejanzekovichlaw.com/one-of-the-most-common-days-for-dui-arrests-super-bowl-sunday/

[3] https://dmvnv.com/pdfforms/qtdui.pdf

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