State Police remind you to get home safely and soberly this Super Bowl weekend, and to keep your thumbs off your phone and on the wheel when you're on the road.
As a follow-up to initiatives laid out in the Governor's State of the State address, law enforcement agencies across the state will amp up patrols starting this Friday, January 31st through Monday, February 3rd.
During this period, drivers can expect to encounter sobriety checkpoints and increased DWI enforcement patrols.
The statewide STOP-DWI and Texting-While-Driving Crackdown is an effort to reduce the amount of deaths and injuries caused by alcohol-related crashes and distracted driving.
Remember to wear your seat-belt regardless if you're driving or are a passenger in a vehicle. New York State Police says this is best defense against a drunk-driving crash.
Whether you're attending a Super Bowl party, or have plans to watch the game -- or Saturday's Syracuse University vs. Duke game -- at a bar or a restaurant, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration offers the following suggestions:
· Designate your sober driver, or plan another way to get home safely before the party begins.
· If you don't have a designated driver, then ask a sober friend for a ride home; call a cab, friend, or family member to come and get you; or just stay for the night.
· Use your community's sober ride program.
· Never let friends drive if they have had too much to drink.
And if you're hosting a Super Bowl or SU vs. Duke party:
· Make sure all your guests designate a sober driver in advance, or arrange for alternate transportation to ensure they get home safely.
· Serve food and include non-alcoholic beverages at the party.
· Stop serving alcohol at the end of the third quarter of the game and begin serving coffee and dessert.
· Keep the numbers for local cab companies handy, and take the keys away from anyone who has had too much to drink.
In his 2014 State of the State Address, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a new law that would suspend licenses for five years for drivers found guilty of two convictions of drunk or distracted driving in a three-year-period. Under the law, those who have three or more convictions in their driving lifetime would also be required to give up their licenses.
To fight distracted driving among teens and young drivers, Governor Cuomo announced a new law that would suspend their licenses for a year if anyone under the age of 21 is caught texting while driving.