Road safety for football game days

Autumn is an exciting time for sports fans. Football season is here, and thousands of Vikings and Gophers fans can’t wait to order their game tickets, wash their jerseys and attend parties at their friend’s house as they root for their home teams to crush the competition.

For Minnesota drivers, game days can be some of the worst days in autumn to be on the road. Traffic piles up in Minneapolis, and you’ll likely encounter more drunk and distracted drivers in your area than you would normally on the weekends. Whether you’re heading up to U.S. Bank Stadium, TCF Bank Stadium or someone’s house to watch the game, you need to keep the following tips in mind:

Plan your schedule and parking ahead of time

Minneapolis can be a chaotic city to navigate even on days without scheduled football games. You’ll need to take into account the dramatic increase in traffic if you plan on getting to the game on time or if you want to attend a tailgate party. Additionally, there are still dozens of active construction projects in Minnesota that won’t be wrapping up for a while.

Check your route to see if there are any major road closings and what parking options you have ahead of time. Most game attendees are competing to get the best spot that they can quickly, so your options will become much more limited if you arrive just before the game starts. If you don’t want to stay for the full game, you should also plan on when you want to leave to avoid dealing with too much traffic that occurs near the final hour of the game.

Away game days can get just as dangerous

You might feel safer on game days where you’re just driving to a friend’s house for a party rather than scrambling for a parking spot in Minneapolis. But you shouldn’t let your guards down on the road just yet. A 2013 study reveals that 60 percent of the traffic fatalities in Minnesota that happened on football game days were on days when the team was away.

During your stay at your friend’s house, try not to consume too much alcohol before you head out. Have one of your sober friends or a ride service take you home if you’ve had too much to drink. If you do remain sober, be on the lookout for any signs a drunk driver may have (such as inconsistent speeds or difficulties with keeping the car straight) as you head home after the game.

As the days get darker and the roads get slippery, the number of hazards you’ll encounter are only going to increase until the football season wraps up. If you suffer from a reckless fan behind the wheel this season, contact an attorney that specializes in car accidents to help you recover the compensation you deserve.

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