Joanna Newton, Senior Project Manager, Public & Government Relations, AAA Auto Club South, (813) 289-5859 office, (813) 787-6886 cell, JNewton@AAASouth.com
Mandy Llanes, Southeast Region Director, Consumer Awareness & Education, Anheuser-Busch Companies, (305)323-9737 cell
Forty-five percent of motorists admit to driving within a few hours of drinking alcohol, shows recent AAA Consumer Pulse™ survey
SAVANNAH, Ga. (March 14, 2011) – AAA Auto Club South and Budweiser will provide two different means of roadside assistance—Tow to Go and the Green Response Team—to motorists throughout St. Patrick’s Day weekend, Thursday through Sunday, March 17 – 20. Tow to Go is available throughout the entire state of Georgia, while the Green Response Team is available to those partaking in Savannah’s St. Patrick’s Day festivities.
AAA and Budweiser will host a press event to help fight drunk driving in Savannah throughout the St. Patrick’s Day weekend festivities Wednesday, 10 a.m., March 16 at Savannah’s Water Front on East River Street in Savannah. Members of the Green Response Team will be available on Segways for media interviews and demonstrations from 10-11 a.m., during the press event.
AAA and Budweiser encourage individuals to plan for a safe St. Patrick’s Day weekend and choose a designated driver or call Tow to Go for a safe ride home, rather than allow anyone to drive whose sobriety is in question. In a recent AAA Consumer Pulse™ survey, 45 percent of respondents said they drove within a few hours of drinking at some point in the past 12 months. The main reasons cited by those who said they drove after drinking were they believed they were not intoxicated (77%) or they only had to drive a short distance (31%).
"No one should have to take unnecessary risks after drinking alcohol, especially since there are so many options for a safe ride home" said Ed Schatzman, senior vice president, Automotive Services, AAA Auto Club South.
The Tow to Go program has removed more than 13,500 potential drunk drivers from roadways since it started in 1998. St. Patrick’s Day is now one of the program’s busiest holidays and call volume increased more than 98 percent in 2010 over 2009.
“AAA wants everyone on the roads to get home safely and if some folks will not plan ahead and choose a designated driver or call a cab, then we are here to make sure they don’t get behind the wheel and hurt themselves or anyone else driving home to their families on St. Patrick’s Day weekend,” said Schatzman.
“Don’t just rely on luck to get you home safely this St. Patrick’s Day,” said Kathy Casso, vice president, Corporate Social Responsibility, Anheuser-Busch. “Adults should plan ahead to ensure they’ve arranged a safe ride home, which is why we’re offering Tow to Go this weekend.”
In addition to Tow to Go, AAA will offer the ‘Green Response Team’ for the third time in Savannah on Segway Personal Transporters. Instead of using large trucks that make it difficult to reach motorists in tight spaces, the fully-equipped Segways are easy to maneuver through large crowds and parking lots and will provide motorists with free roadside assistance March 17 – 20 on auto lockouts, jump starts, flat tires and other services as needed throughout the riverfront area of Savannah by calling (877) 222-7111.
“This is the Green Team’s third year providing eco friendly road service for the St. Patrick’s Day festival and it’s great because Savannah is so friendly and we feel right at home,” said John Droese, regional manager, Georgia and Tennessee Fleet Operations, AAA Auto Club South . “We want to keep Savannah Green for St. Patrick’s Day, and will provide green solutions so you can have a great time and not be stressed by inconvenient car problems.”
Benefits of AAA Road Service on Segways include:
- Agility enables AAA to maneuver through crowds and congested parking lots with ease
- Enhanced visibility by the technician standing on the Segways to find motorists in large crowds
- Equip AAA’s ‘Green Response Team’ with transportation that is free of exhaust and consumes no fossil fuels
The AAA Consumer Pulse™ survey was conducted online among residents living in AAA Auto Club South territory from February 8 -11. A total of 635 residents completed the survey. The survey has a maximum margin of error of +/- 3.9 percentage points. Overall survey responses are weighted by age within state to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the total population, 18 years of age and older in Florida, Georgia and Tennessee.
AAA Auto Club South has 79 branch offices serving more than 4.1 million members in Florida, Georgia, West and Middle Tennessee and Puerto Rico. Since its founding in 1938, AAA Auto Club South has worked to protect and advance freedom of mobility and improve travel safety.
Since 1982, Anheuser-Busch and its nationwide network of 600 wholesalers have invested more than $750 million in national advertising campaigns and community-based programs to promote responsible drinking and prevent alcohol abuse, including drunk driving. For more information on these efforts and the progress being made, visit www.beeresponsible.com.
AAA Auto Club South, 1515 N West Shore Blvd, Tampa, FL 33607-4505 United States
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