FREE RIDE SERVICE TO PREVENT DRUNK DRIVING REACHES ‘OVER 80,000 SERVED’ MARK
Washington, D.C., Jan. 3 – Nearly 1,000 (921) persons in the Washington-metropolitan area used the free safe ride service, SoberRide®, this New Year’s (from 10:00 pm on December 31, 2019 through 4:00 am on January 1, 2020) as opposed to possibly driving home drunk.
“For its hours of operation this New Year’s, this level of ridership translates into SoberRide® removing a potential drunk driver from Greater Washington’s roadways every 23-seconds,” said Kurt Erickson, President of the nonprofit Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP), the organization conducting the region’s SoberRide® effort.
This latest ridership figure places the local, charitable offering in the ‘over 80,000 served’ mark as, cumulatively and since 1991, WRAP’s SoberRide® program has provided 80,047 free safe rides home to would-be drunk drivers in the Greater Washington area.
WRAP’s most recent holiday SoberRide® offering concluded this past Wednesday morning (January 1) after kicking-off and running nightly since December 20, 2019 providing a total of 1,121 free safe rides to local residents age 21 and older who otherwise may have attempted to drive home after drinking. The local anti-drunk driving service is offered as a way to keep local roads safe from potentially impaired drivers during this traditionally high-risk holiday. During the most recent 12 consecutive evening period, area residents celebrating with alcohol could download Lyft to their phones, then enter WRAP-provided codes (available at SoberRide.com) in the app’s “Promo” section to receive their no cost (up to $ 15) safe transportation home while supplies lasted.
Since partnering with Lyft, WRAP reports a nearly tripling of its annual SoberRide® ridership (the charity also offers its free safe ride service on St. Patrick’s Day, Cinco de Mayo, July 4th and Halloween) with 4,549 total riders in 2019 versus 1,655 in 2016 (the last year when the SoberRide® program was serviced by participating local taxicab companies).
“Lyft is proud of the role ridesharing has played in reducing impaired driving across the nation. Here in the DC area, partnering with the Washington Regional Alcohol Program allows us to take our commitment to providing reliable, convenient, and responsible transportation a step further, particularly during times of the year when people are out celebrating and in need of a ride home,” said Mike Heslin, Lyft General Manager.
The most recent New Year’s ridership of 921 users is the fourth highest for that holiday since SoberRide’s inception.
Lyft provided SoberRide® trips last month throughout the Washington-metropolitan area to local residents age 21 and older who otherwise may have attempted to drive home after drinking.
SoberRide® was offered throughout Lyft’s Washington, D.C. coverage area which includes all or parts of: the District of Columbia; the Maryland counties of Montgomery and Prince George’s; and the Northern Virginia counties of Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William.
Sponsors of WRAP’s 2019 Holiday SoberRide® campaign included the 395 Express Lanes, AAA Mid-Atlantic, Anheuser-Busch, Brown-Forman, Constellation Brands, District of Columbia Association of Beverage Alcohol Wholesalers, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Giant Food, Glory Days Grill, Heineken, Kendall-Jackson, Lyft, MillerCoors, Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington and the Washington Area New Automobile Dealers Association.
Founded in 1982, the nonprofit [501(c)(3)] Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP) is a coalition of diverse interests using effective education, innovative programs and targeted advocacy to end alcohol-impaired driving and underage drinking in the Washington, DC metro area. Through public education, innovative health education programs and advocacy, WRAP is credited with keeping the metro-Washington area’s alcohol-related traffic deaths historically lower than the national average.
More information about WRAP’s SoberRide® initiative can be found at www.SoberRide.com