On February 7, 2021 Tampa will host Super Bowl LV. Previously, Tampa has hosted four Super Bowls. The most recent Super Bowl that Tampa hosted was in 2009. It should come as no surprise that car and pedestrian accidents increase over the Super Bowl weekend. One of the primary reasons for additional accidents over Super Bowl weekend is the influx of people on the streets and highways.
The population of Tampa is approximately 400,000, and a rough estimate is that 200,000 – 225,000 people will visit Tampa Bay over Super Bowl weekend in 2021. All holidays come with a heightened risk of car crashes, and the Super Bowl is no exception. Higher rates of drinking and the general excitement that comes with major events and holidays is a prime formula for poor decision making, sometimes with tragic outcomes.
While the involvement of alcohol is unknown, a man in Kansas City died after setting off fireworks in a homemade mortar, just minutes after the Chiefs secured victory in Super Bowl LIV. Kansas City reported gunfire all across the city during and after the game, and one disgruntled patron of a Miami bar shot at customers inside before fleeing.
Miami just recently hosted the Super Bowl, and next year the Super Bowl will be in Tampa. It’s important for all Florida drivers and pedestrians to be aware of the risk, and what they can do should the worst occur.
Drunk Driving in Florida
There are many myths and misconceptions around drunk driving, two of which are the notions that one can sober up faster if they eat a greasy meal or drink coffee.
While hearty foods such as nachos, chicken wings, pretzels and pizza are Super Bowl staples, eating these foods after you’ve already been drinking will not reduce the effects of the alcohol on your system. It’s already passed through your digestive tract and into your bloodstream, meaning the snacks will only help mitigate the effects of future alcohol.
Similarly, drinking coffee will also not work. While it’s true that alcohol is a central nervous system depressant, and caffeine is a stimulant, their effects don’t “cancel each other out”. You’ll be more awake, perhaps, but the alcohol will still hamper your impulse control, reaction time, coordination, and situational awareness. There is no cure-all: the only way to sober up is with time.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 10,511 traffic fatalities involving drunk drivers in 2018 alone. In the U.S. police arrest about 1.5 million people, on average, each year for drunk driving. The average DUI court case costs about $10,000.
Florida has seen a steady decline in the total number of drunk driving-related fatalities each year — don’t become a statistic!
Distracted Driving in Tampa
There can only be one winner at the Super Bowl on February 7, 2021 in Tampa. Some fans particularly affected by their team’s loss might find themselves angry and distracted behind the wheel, which is never a recipe for safe driving. Even with our eyes on the road, strong emotions or heated conversations reduce a driver’s situational awareness and can lead to an accident just as much as looking down at a phone can.
I’ve Been Hit By a Drunk Driver in Tampa — What Now?
Sadly, prevention can only go so far. If you’ve been the victim of a drunk driving incident around the Super Bowl or any other time of year in the state of Florida, there’s one personal injury attorney firm you can count on: Franco Law Group. We’ve provided legal services to hundreds of Floridians for over 20 years, whether seeking damages for auto, bicycle, or pedestrian accidents, as well as social security disability claims.
We are here to help. Simply give us a call at (813) 873-0180 and see how we can help you.