BUFFALO, N.Y. – As cities across the nation welcome back football this September, fans will fire-up the grills, open the coolers and begin the tailgating season. It’s been a yearly tradition in college and pro towns for decades and each year, accidents happen.
That’s why the Buffalo car accident attorneys at Cellino & Barnes urge tailgaters to put safety first this fall – both before and after the game.
“There are so many things that can go wrong at a tailgate – from fires to food poisoning, it’s important to be prepared and make sure everyone follows the best safety practices,” Buffalo car accident lawyer Steve Barnes said. “At the end of the game, thousands of people will be driving home and not all of them are sober, raising the risk for alcohol-fueled crashes.”
Drinking and driving on football game days is a very real problem across the nation, a state report found. Nearly half of those who drink while at a football party report driving home and each week, DUI arrests spike up to 13 percent in cities and campuses with home football games.
Cellino & Barnes estimates about 20,000 people get injured in DUI crashes every year on days when a local football team is playing. That’s roughly 6 percent of all alcohol-fueled crashes. Hundreds more are killed by drunk drivers on game days.
“We’ve found that alcohol consumption on game days rival holidays like New Year’s Eve,” Barnes said. “That means more people are out drinking and driving during football season than other times of the year and these irresponsible drivers are endangering their own lives and the lives of others.”
Drunk driving isn’t the only concern associated with football games.
Each year, fans can suffer a variety of injuries while tailgating or at the game. Some of these injuries include:
Fatigue – waking up at 7 AM for a day of tailgating can be exhausting. Even for those who are sober, fatigue can be a major factor after the game. It’s estimated that fatigue plays a factor in thousands of post-game car crashes.
Dehydration – alcohol can often cause severe dehydration but many tailgaters can become dehydrated quickly – even without the booze. Dehydration can affect judgment and motor skills, increasing a person’s risk for various accidents
Premises liability – sometimes stadiums, parking lot owners or universities can be held liable for certain injuries while tailgating. Attorneys say these injuries are most often caused by dangerous hazards like slippery floors at the stadium or sharp objects in a tailgating parking lot
“Tailgating is supposed to be a fun time to be with friends and family but every year, someone’s tailgate is ruined by an irresponsible party,” Barnes said. “There are cars, bon fires, footballs being thrown, slippery floors and many other ways a person can get severely injured. Many victims may not know if they are entitled to compensation and that’s why Cellino & Barnes firm offers free one-on-one consultations with a personal injury attorney.”
The Buffalo car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes are proud to support safe tailgating in Western New York but when your safety is compromised by a negligent driver or tailgater, they could help you get the best result possible. If you’ve been injured, call 800-888-8888 for a free case evaluation.
Have a fun and safe football and tailgating season.