Skip to Main Content
Media Room

Drinking, drunk driving spike on Super Bowl Sunday

Media Type: Press Release

Data shows New England, Atlanta could see biggest challenges

January 31, 2017, DENVER—The most dangerous place during Super Bowl LI likely won’t be out on the field at NRG Stadium—it will be out on the roads during and after the big game.

Data from Alcohol Monitoring Systems (AMS) shows that drinking violations by repeat drunk drivers ordered to stay sober jumps an average of 22 percent nationwide on Super Bowl Sunday, compared to the usual violation rates on a Sunday.

The findings come from a nationwide analysis of the drinking behavior of 530,000 repeat DUI offenders monitored every 30 minutes for alcohol consumption. The majority of these individuals are considered to be high-risk, repeat drunk drivers who have been court-ordered to stay sober, knew they were being monitored and knew there would be consequences, including incarceration.

Law Enforcement in New England and Georgia may have extra cause for concern. The data also shows that states and regions with a team in the game can see drinking violations double or even triple. Last time the Patriots made it to the championship game in 2015, violations in New England were two times higher than the rest of the country on Super Bowl Sunday, and 103 percent higher than a usual Sunday in that region.

According to AMS spokesperson Kathleen Brown, “For many, alcohol and the Super Bowl go hand-in-hand. While most people drink responsibly, some make a bad decision to get behind the wheel,” says Brown. “The individuals we monitor are being tested every 30 minutes, and they know they’re going to be caught. And they know the consequence will likely be time in jail. Yet violations skyrocket. You can imagine the rate of drinking for those who aren’t being monitored.”

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2015 on average one American was killed in a drunk driving crash every 51 minutes. Alcohol-impaired traffic fatalities often spike on holidays and popular drinking days, like Super Bowl Sunday. NHTSA’s Fans Don’t Let Fans Drive Drunk campaign encourages people to make plans ahead of time that will prevent them from getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after drinking.

About Alcohol Monitoring Systems, Inc. (AMS)
Established in 1997, Alcohol Monitoring Systems, Inc. (AMS) is the world’s leading provider of alcohol testing technologies for the criminal justice industry. The company’s flagship Continuous Alcohol Monitoring (CAM) technology, launched in 2003, revolutionized the way courts, agencies and treatment providers monitor and manage alcohol-involved offenders. In 2013 the company launched the SCRAM Systems suite of electronic monitoring technologies, which includes SCRAM Remote Breath®, SCRAM GPS®, and SCRAM House Arrest®. AMS employs 240 people worldwide and is a privately-held company headquartered in Littleton, Colorado.