As you plan your Super Bowl party this weekend, think about the steps you need to take to prevent friends and family from driving drunk afterwards.
Our auto accident attorney in West Palm understands what it takes to obtain compensation for victims who have been seriously injured or killed by a drunk driver.
Under Florida law, a host may be financially responsible if an intoxicated guest injures others or destroys property after leaving a party.
Specifically, Florida Statute 768.125 imposes social host liability upon someone who furnishes alcohol to a guest under the legal drinking age of 21. Further, the law imposes liability for injury or property damage when a host “knowingly” serves someone “habitually addicted” to alcoholic beverages, regardless of age.
The problem of social host liability is never more apparent than on Super Bowl Sundays. It has been estimated that 36 percent of motor vehicle fatalities on Super Bowl Sunday are attributable to drunk driving.
To address this traffic danger, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is urging everyone to make sure that those driving home from Super Bowl parties are sober. As part of its “Fans Don’t Let Fans Drive Drunk” campaign, the agency has issued a set of safety tips for those who host Super Bowl parties:
* Have all guests identify their designated drivers in advance.
* For those without designated drivers, help arrange alternate transportation for after the game.
* Serve an abundant amount of food to ward off intoxication, and make sure that there are plenty of beverages without alcohol available for guests.
* Stop serving alcoholic beverages when the third quarter of the Super Bowl ends. Switch to coffee and dessert.
* Have phone numbers for local taxi cab companies readily available.
* Take car keys away from anyone who has had too much to drink.
Party goers should follow these safety trips to avoid the perils of drunk driving:
* Those without designated drivers should be prepared to call a cab, ask a sober friend for a ride home, or just stay where they are until the effects of alcohol consumption have worn off.
* Use community sober ride programs.
* Never let friends out of sight if there is a concern that they have had too much to drink and may be about to drive.
Of course, buckling up is the best defense against other drivers who are impaired.
Those going to a Super Bowl party need to be defensive drivers, keeping in mind that statistics show that the number of fatal crashes involving drunk drivers is almost twice as high during the weekend (31 percent) than during weekdays (15 percent). In addition, the percentage of drunk driving fatalities is four times higher at night (36 percent) than during the day (8 percent).
A total of 9,878 people died in drunk driving accidents in 2011. That number represents 31 percent of all auto accident fatalities in the United States that year.
If you have been injured, contact The Hollander Law Firm today for a free consultation at 888.751.7777.