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GA and FL Partner For Zero DUI Tolerance on Football Rivalry Weekend

By   /   October 20, 2012  /   Comments

Sober Driving PSA Featuring Both State Patrols to Air In The Coming Week
 
(ATLANTA) It’s been called the “World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party”, but the tailgating fans of the UGA/Florida game will have one thing in common if they decide to drink and drive. Whether they’re wearing the Dawgs’ red and black or the Gators’ blue and orange, they’ll be seeing the inside of a gray jail cell if they drive impaired.
 

And to reinforce the fact that no matter who fans root for on the gridiron, the commitment to getting impaired drivers off the roads remains the same, the Georgia State Patrol (GSP) and the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) are once again teaming up to remind game day fans to make sure they have a sober driver when UGA plays the Florida Gators in Jacksonville on Oct. 27.
 
To drive this message home, First Coast News will be airing a special PSA, which can be viewed online at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWFx-k9FAk8, for the second year on their NBC and ABC affiliate stations. The spot features Sgt. David Herring of the GSP and Trooper Philip Delgado of the FHP agreeing that while they root for different teams, their commitment to getting drunk drivers off the road remains the same. The PSA will be aired during pre-game activities at EverBank Field, site of the annual football battle, and on First Coast News’ two stations for the week leading up to the game at no cost to the two states.
 
“The Georgia-Florida game is a college football tradition and one of the highlights of the football season. We certainly want everyone to have a good time, but we also want everyone to be safe,” said Col. Mark McDonough, Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Safety. “Troopers will be patrolling throughout the weekend, watching for impaired drivers in an effort to prevent tragic crashes on the roads of the two states. Remember to use a designated driver if alcohol will be part of your celebration and if you’re hosting a party, remember to include non-alcoholic beverages for designated drivers.”
 
And it is clear that for both state law enforcement agencies, impaired driving will not be tolerated on either side of the state line.
 
“Football games give fans an opportunity to show your team spirit and have a great time, and we want to make sure you return home safely after the game,” said Col. David Brierton, Director of the Florida Highway Patrol. “Our troopers will be out looking for impaired driving and taking the appropriate enforcement action on those drivers who put themselves and others in danger by drinking and driving.”
 
The production and airing of the PSA, originally conceptualized by Governor’s Office of Highway Safety Director Harris Blackwood and the Florida Department of Transportation’s Chief Safety Officer Marianne Trussell, has been helped greatly by First Coast News’ commitment to public safety.
 
“Impaired driving is a curse on our society,” said Eric Land, President and General Manager of First Coast News. “The team at First Coast News is committed to using the strength of television to share this important message and warning that such dangerous behavior will not be tolerated. It proves great rivals can come together for the greater good of our fans.”
 
This campaign is the first time the two states have jointly reached out to football fans with such a direct campaign, although Georgia and Florida work together annually on border enforcement campaigns.
 
“We’re excited about this unique approach to reducing impaired driving crashes, injuries and fatalities,” said Director Blackwood. “We don’t want to see a celebratory weekend turn into tragedy for anyone, whether they’re wearing red and black or blue and orange.”
 
For more information about the dangers of drunk driving, visit www.stopimpaireddriving.org or visit the GOHS website at www.gahighwaysafety.org.
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