CONTACT: Kurt Gregory Erickson
PHONE: W. 703-893-0461
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 16, 2015
DC MAYOR HELPS LAUNCH FREE ST. PAT’S CAB SERVICE TO PREVENT DUI
OVER HALF OF ALL POST-ST. PATRICK’S DAY TRAFFIC DEATHS IN U.S. CAUSED BY DRUNK DRIVERS
Washington, D.C., March 16 – Preparing to combat that time of year when, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than half (55%) of all U.S. traffic deaths are caused by alcohol-impaired drivers*, District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser today helped launch a free cab ride service operating tomorrow (St. Patrick’s Day) targeting would-be drunk drivers throughout the Washington-metropolitan area.
Offered by the nonprofit Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP), the
2015 St. Patty’s Day SoberRide® program will be in operation beginning at 4:00 pm on
Tuesday, March 17th and continue until 4:00 am on Wednesday, March 18th as a way to
keep local roads safe from impaired drivers during this traditionally high-risk holiday.
During this 12-hour period, area residents celebrating with alcohol may call the
toll-free SoberRide® phone number 1–800–200–TAXI (8294) and be afforded a no-cost
(up to a $ 30 fare), safe way home. AT&T wireless customers can dial #WRAP for the
Mayor Bowser joined officials from WRAP, the Metropolitan Police Department
and others today at Fado Irish Pub & Restaurant in Washington, D.C. to ceremonially
launch the local anti-drunk driving initiative.
Local taxicab companies throughout the Washington-metropolitan area provide
this no-cost service to local residents age 21 and older who otherwise may have
attempted to drive home after drinking.
“According to government figures, nearly three-fourths of U.S. highway deaths on St. Patrick’s Day involved drunk drivers operating at twice the legal limit,” said Kurt Gregory Erickson, WRAP’s President.
SoberRide® is offered in the District of Columbia; throughout the Maryland counties of Montgomery and Prince George’s; and throughout the Northern Virginia counties of Arlington, Fairfax, (eastern) Loudoun and Prince William.
Sponsors of this year’s St. Patrick’s Day SoberRide® offering include AAA MidAtlantic, Anheuser-Busch, Diageo, District of Columbia Association of Beverage Alcohol Wholesalers, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility, Giant Food, MillerCoors, Red Top Cab of Arlington, Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, Volkswagen Group of America and the Washington Area New Automobile Dealers Association.
In addition, eight of the Washington-metropolitan area’s better-known Irish restaurants have also united to ensure a safe St. Patrick’s Day celebration this year by sponsoring SoberRide®. These dining establishments include: The Dubliner Restaurant & Pub (DC); Fadó (DC); James Hoban’s Irish Restaurant & Bar (DC); Kelly’s Irish Times (DC); Martin’s Tavern Est. 1933 (DC); Murphy’s Grand Irish Pub (DC & VA); Rí Rá Irish Pub (DC & VA); and Siné Irish Pub (VA).
Participating taxicab companies include: Alexandria Yellow Cab; Barwood; Fairfax Yellow Cab; Loudoun Yellow Cab; Manassas Cab Company; Red Top Cab; Silver Cab of Prince George’s County; Yellow Cab of D.C.; and Yellow Cab of Prince William County.
Founded in 1982, the nonprofit [501(c)(3)] Washington Regional Alcohol Program is an award-winning public-private partnership working to prevent drunk driving and underage drinking in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region. Through public education, innovative health education programs and advocacy, WRAP is credited with keeping the metro-Washington area’s alcohol-related traffic deaths consistently lower than the national average.
Since 1993, WRAP’s SoberRide® program has provided 62,182 free cab rides home to would-be drunk drivers in the Greater Washington area.
For more information, visit www.soberride.com.
*Source: NHTSA (“Post-[St. Patrick’s Day] party hours between midnight and 5:59 am, March 18, 2013”):