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“Sober Ride Home” Pilot Project Will Offer Free Rides to Decrease DUI Crashes, Fatalities in Central PA

The Tri-County Regional Planning Commission (TCRPC) announced today that it will soon launch a pilot program called “Sober Ride Home” that will provide free rideshare alternatives to people who have consumed alcohol at local bars and restaurants.

An effort of the Harrisburg Area Transportation Study (HATS), Sober Ride Home is made possible through a grant from the Federal Highway Administration and the Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) program.

According to TCRPC Executive Director Steve Deck, the demonstration project will partner with Commute PA and other stakeholders like Uber to offer on-demand rides during peak times.

Deck said Sober Ride Home will provide free rides based on mapping and data developed through HATS’ SS4A effort to identify locations and timeframes in the community that have seen the highest DUI figures.

“In our region, about 40 percent of fatal crashes and 30 percent of serious injury crashes involve impaired drivers,” Deck said. “The majority of these crashes happen between Thursday and Saturday.”

Sober Ride Home will conduct an advertising campaign and collaborate with local bars and restaurants to encourage patrons not to drive under the influence, Deck explained. It will also educate servers on how impaired patrons can secure a free ride home.

Deck said TCRPC will make the year-long program available this summer and hopes to implement it long-term.

“The ultimate goal is to improve safety on Central PA roadways and decrease DUI-related crashes and fatalities through safe, accessible transportation alternatives,” Deck said.

HATS is the federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for Cumberland, Dauphin and Perry counties. It is administered by TCRPC, which provides land use and transportation planning for the Harrisburg-Carlisle metropolitan area’s 103 municipalities and nearly 600,000 residents.


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