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Jed Boal ReportingDuring the last decade, alcohol-related crashes declined nationwide, but alcohol is still a factor in more than 16-thousand car crash deaths each year. AAA hopes to save lives this New Year's Eve with a new program.
Public awareness, DUI patrols and community programs all help keep drunken drivers off the road. Regardless, people will drink and drive this New Year's Eve, so AAA offers drinkers one more incentive to toss their keys to someone else.
This New Year's Eve, Mike Wright may be the guy to catch those keys. On a typical day, a AA tow truck may rescue you at the side of the road. New Year's Eve, one might just save your life.
Rolayne Fairclough, AAA: "The value of the program is to give them a stop-gap, in case they really drink too much and don't know how to get home."
AAA is launching a new program called "Tipsy Tow." If you drink too much, call AAA and one of their trucks will tow you and your car home. It's free and you do not have to be a AAA member.
Rolayne Fairclough: "There's no penalties for them, we don't report names to law enforcement. All we do is get them home safely."
Tipsy Tow will take you home up to seven miles. If other passengers need a ride, they will be taken to the driver's home as long as there is enough room in the truck.
Rolayne Fairclough: "Even if people are acting under the best intentions, sometimes things go awry. This will allow people to get home safely."
AAA estimates a first time DUI can cost up to 12-thousand dollars in fines, legal fees and added insurance expenses. And if you get caught drinking and driving, they'll tow your car anyway. You cannot make reservations, but it's a safe ride home.
The number is 1-800-AAA HELP.