PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Evesham Township will begin a new 30-day pilot program on Friday offering residents who have had too much to drink a free ride home. Funds for the project have been provided through a grant from the State Highway Trust Fund and donations from the Evesham Celebrations Foundation and the Marlton Business Association.
Mayor Randy Brown said he was shocked at the people being arrested to driving drunk in his town and explained that through their partnership with Sober Sam, who is providing the transportation, residents won’t even need to come back to get their cars.
“We’re arresting some people who live a mile and a half from their home. Are you kidding me? Bring your bike. Walk. Don’t get in the vehicle a mile and a half from your home. So now we’re saying, you’re an Evesham resident, we’re going to find a way to get you home. The great part of Sober Sam, that brings you and your car home. The car too. If you’re an Evesham resident, and you get arrested for a DUI in the next 30 days, you should have your head examined. Besides the shuttle, we’re bringing your car home via Sober Sam. It’s about habit forming. I believe we’re at the tip of the spear.”
He stated the impact of drunk driving deaths are so great, the need to take action is of the utmost importance.
“Unfortunately in public service, they don’t give you a manual on how to react when one of your residents is killed by a drunk driver…Do you know what it’s like to stand at a funeral with a mom and dad who’ve lost a 19-year-old kid? It’s a different motivation. That was one of the founding blocks that really put us in this direction of trying to find ways for people to get home. To me, it’s one person. When you look at one person that passes away in a DUI, if that’s a working father of four, who’s 40-years-old and passes away, do you know what that does, not just to that family, but then to the community and the extended family? It’s crazy, the financial impact of that.”
Brown would like to see the trial be successful enough that the community comes together to make sure it continues.
“What I am hopeful is that not only the Marlton Business Associations, but the businesses…they see it and they say this is a lot cheaper than have somebody leave here, kill somebody, and I get a half million dollar fine and they take my license away for 60 days.”
For residents that live outside of Evesham, Sober Sam will be offering discounts to the people who would like a ride home.