It’s springtime in Phoenix, which means two things: fantastic weather and baseball. This is the time of the year when Cactus League spring training games get underway, attracting millions of baseball fans from across the country. Spring training offers fans a chance to watch one of 15 Major League Baseball teams compete as they prepare for the official season coming up soon.
Catching a spring training game is a great way to relax with friends, family and even co-workers while soaking up some of the amazing weather we enjoy here in Phoenix this time of the year. As with most sporting events, alcohol is served at Cactus League games, which can lead to unfortunate consequences for those that choose to drive after having a few drinks at the game.
Last year, there were close to 60 DUI arrests during the first week of spring training alone. Those who plan on attending a Cactus League game this year can expect to see beefed up DUI patrols made up of the several law enforcement agencies in the Phoenix area.
As mentioned before, 15 of the 30 MLB teams take up residence in Arizona during the spring training season each year as they ready themselves for regular season. The games bring in fans from all over the country, many of them unaware of Arizona’s tough DUI laws. Those arrested for DUI that live outside of Arizona are still likely to face the same punishment and penalties that state residents do, such as a mandatory jail sentence of 24 hours and a required ignition interlock device installed on their vehicle.
It’s important that visitors from out of state are familiar with Arizona DUI laws and understand the harsh consequences that come from breaking those laws.
40% of the Crowd May Have Alcohol in Their Systems
For many people, there is nothing more relaxing than enjoying a few beers while watching a ball game on a sunny afternoon. In some cases, a few beers can be too many and put the person over the legal limit. Some people are surprised to learn that they are too drunk to legally drive at the end of a spring training game.
In a study conducted in 2011 by the Center for Advancing Health, results indicated that 40% of the exiting crowds at any given sporting event still have booze in their systems. 8% were above the legal limit, which means they could have been arrested for DUI if they chose to get behind the wheel to drive home after the game.
Consider that the average attendance for a Chicago Cubs spring training game is right above 14,000. If the numbers hold true, that means there could be over 1100 people leaving the game legally drunk.
Don’t let a DUI ruin your spring training game this year. Be sure you have a plan if you will be drinking at the ball game. If you are arrested for DUI, it’s important that you contact an experienced Phoenix DUI attorney as soon as possible. Charlie Naegle has successfully defended hundreds of DUI cases and can help you see the best possible outcome in your case.