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Ensure safer roads, lower auto insurance costs by keeping drunk drivers off the road

Drunken driving convictions result in much higher auto insurance premiums, and drunk drivers are responsible for thousands of on-road fatalities each year

Super Bowl partiers should make sure to designate a driver, the Insurance Information Institute suggested this week.

In 2008, an estimated 13,000 deaths occurred as a direct result of drunk driving. Of the fatal accidents incurred on Super Bowl Sunday that year, 49 percent involved a driver with a blood alcohol level of at least 0.08.

“Those throwing a party where alcohol is served have both a legal and moral responsibility to make sure that their guests are capable of driving safely,” III consumer spokesperson Jeanne M. Salvatore said.

Not only can auto insurance premiums spike as a result of a drunken driving conviction, she added, but some insurers may “refuse to insure drivers with a history of impaired driving.”

Aside from designating a driver, the III recommends that partiers limit alcohol intake and serve plenty of food to party guests. Having the numbers of cab companies handy can help keep an impaired driver from getting behind the wheel, and people should wear their seatbelts and drive defensively to protect themselves from errant motorists.

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Posted: February 2, 2010

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