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Super Bowl Fans Don't Let Fans Drive Drunk Reminds the Michigan Liquor Control Commission

February 10, 2021 - With Super Bowl Sunday known for the overconsumption of alcohol, the Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC) reminds football fans across the state to celebrate responsibly.

If your game day partying involves alcohol, make moderation your game plan; don't binge drink, never drink and drive, and plan ahead for a safe ride home. If you're hosting a party, take care of your guests. If you're a designated driver, take it seriously - people are relying on you.

"This huge sports weekend has become a heavy drinking day for many football fans, making it one of the deadliest alcohol-related traffic accident days of the year," said MLCC Chair Pat Gagliardi. "The most recent 2020 statistics show that almost 42 percent of all fatal crashes in Michigan involved alcohol, drugs or both. No one should ever take the risk of drinking and getting behind the wheel, not even after one drink. Give the car keys to a sober friend, or use public transportation or a rideshare service to avoid impaired driving and get home safely."

Kick off Super Bowl Sunday with these reminders:

Buzzed driving is drunk driving.

  • Even one drink can impair your judgement and ability to drive, slow your reaction time, dull your concentration, and cause vision problems.

Drunk driving kills.

  • In Michigan, 41.8% of all fatal crashes involved alcohol, drugs or both in 2020*
  • Every day, about 28 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes - that's one person every 52 minutes.**
  • In 2019, 10,142 people lost their lives in drunk driving-crashes. All of these deaths were preventable.** 

Know the law and consequences of driving drunk.  

  • In Michigan, it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher.
  • Motorists can also be arrested at any BAC level if an officer believes they are impaired.

 Beware of the "heart" dangers of binge drinking.

  • Binge drinking - having five or more drinks in two hours for men or four or more drinks for women - significantly increases the risk for an irregular heartbeat -- atrial fibrillation (a-fib) a dangerous heart rhythm disorder that can lead to blood clots, stroke or heart failure in individuals who have never been diagnosed with it before, and especially for those over age 65, according to a recent study.***
  • Super Bowl Sunday and other days when more people consume more alcohol are also associated with more emergency room visits for atrial fibrillation.
  • The effects of alcohol are the same whether you drink beer, wine, or whiskey. A 12-ounce can of beer, a 5-ounce glass of wine, and a 1.5-ounce shot of whiskey all "standard" drinks and contain the same amount of alcohol.

Fans: never drink to get drunk; celebrate wisely and use good judgment. If your night involves alcohol, arrange for a designated driver or other safe way home for yourself or friends before going to the bar or party. Always buckle up; seat belts are your best defense. Walking impaired is also dangerous. Designate a sober friend to walk home with you.

Hosting a party at home? Be responsible and limit your own alcohol intake. Serve plenty of food and non-alcoholic beverages as an option. Make sure all guests have a safe ride home. Take the keys away from guests who shouldn't be driving. Never serve alcohol to minors, as you can be held liable for any damage, injury, or death caused by the underage driver.

The MLCC reminds liquor licensees of their responsibilities to keep customers safe -- to check IDs and serve only those of legal drinking age and to not overserve patrons. Also, licensees shall maintain order and know their establishment's capacity limits to avoid overcrowding that can lead to obstructed exits which are safety and fire hazards.

"Have a great time this weekend rooting for your favorite team, but never put yourself or others at risk because you made a bad choice to drink and drive," said Gagliardi. "Even if you've only had one drink, make it your priority to ensure the safety of yourself and others."

MLCC joins with the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Fans Don't Let Fans Drive Drunk campaign to encourage people to make plans ahead of the game that will prevent them from drinking and driving. 

The mission of the Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC) is to make alcoholic beverages available for consumption while protecting the consumer and the general public through regulation of those involved in the sale and distribution of these alcohol beverage products.

* 2020 Michigan Annual Drunk Driving Audit, Michigan State Police, July 1, 2021.
**National Highway Traffic Safety Administration  
***University of California San Francisco, and Nature Cardiovascular Research, both January 12, 2022.