Cinco de Mayo, the May 5 commemoration of Mexican heritage and pride, is often celebrated with festivities that include alcohol. If you drink during your celebration, AAA Northern California will take you and your car home free of charge.
AAA’s Tipsy Tow program is open to everyone. You don’t need to be an AAA member to take advantage of this service to the community.
AAA will offer the service in Northern California to drinking drivers from 6 p.m. on May 5 to 6 a.m. on May 6. Drivers, potential passengers, party hosts, bartenders and restaurant managers can call 800-222-4357 (AAA-HELP) for a free tow home of up to 10 miles. Just tell the AAA operator, “I need a Tipsy Tow,” and a truck will be on its way.
The service will provide a one-way ride for the driver and vehicle to the driver’s home. If additional passengers need a ride, they’ll be taken to the driver’s home as long as there is enough room for them to be transported safely in the tow truck. No reservations will be taken.
According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics compiled in 2008, drunken-driving crashes account for about 36 percent of highway deaths of young people 16 to 24. As little as one drink can impair vision, steering, braking, judgment and reaction time.
AAA estimates that a first-time DUI conviction in California can cost up to $12,000 in fines, penalties, restitution, legal fees and added insurance expenses. Of course, you can’t put a price tag on a crash that causes an injury or death.
“Many people enjoy getting into the spirit of Cinco de Mayo, which tends to involve plenty of celebrating,” said Cynthia Harris, spokesperson for AAA Northern California. “If you’ve been drinking alcohol, don’t get behind the wheel. Give AAA a call and we’ll make sure you get home safely.”
AAA Northern California offers a array of automotive, travel, insurance, DMV, financial services and consumer discounts to nearly 4 million members. AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers since it was founded more than 100 years ago.