Uber, MADD partner on responsible alternative to driving drunk

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Uber Joins MADD To Combat Drunk Driving

(WTIC) -FAIRFIELD - As part of their ongoing effort to combat drunk driving this holiday season, Uber has joined Mothers Against Drunk Driving and the Fairfield Police Department to urge residents to act responsibly this New Year's Eve.

To bolster their effort, Uber announced promotions for both existing and new riders.

New users can sign up for Uber using the promo code MADDCT to receive $25 off of their first Uber ride. For each sign up, $5 will be donated to MADD Connecticut.

See more images of the car-riding service:

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Uber, MADD partner on responsible alternative to driving drunk
Indian drivers for Uber show mobiles phones given to them by the company during a one-day hunger strike against the US-headquartered transportation service in Hyderabad on August 28, 2015. The drivers allege they were not making as much money as promised by Uber. India counts as Uber's second biggest market after the United States and the company claims around 35 percent of Indian market share with 150,000 'driver entrepreneurs.' AFP PHOTO/NOAH SEELAM (Photo credit should read NOAH SEELAM/AFP/Getty Images)
UberPOP driver Anthony Loussala-Dubreas, 24, of Paris, turns on his smartphone in his car in Paris, Friday, Dec. 12, 2014. A French court on Friday ordered Uber to withdraw from its mobile app to French users "all mention suggesting it is legal" for Uber's drivers to act like taxis — that is, driving around and waiting for clients. But the court did not ban the popular ride-hailing service. (AP Photo/Bastien Inzaurralde)
The Uber app is seen on a smartphone past cabs waiting fro clients near the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, on December 9, 2014. A judge on December 9, 2014 banned the popular smartphone taxi service Uber from operating in Spain, court officials said, following similar prohibition action in several other countries. AFP PHOTO/ QUIQUE GARCIA (Photo credit should read QUIQUE GARCIA/AFP/Getty Images)
The photograph of UberPOP driver Anthony Loussala-Dubreas, 24, of Paris, is seen on his UberPOP application on his smartphone in his car in Paris, Friday, Dec. 12, 2014. A French court on Friday ordered Uber to withdraw from its mobile app to French users "all mention suggesting it is legal" for Uber's drivers to act like taxis — that is, driving around and waiting for clients. But the court did not ban the popular ride-hailing service. (AP Photo/Bastien Inzaurralde)
In this photo taken Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014, a man leaves the headquarters of Uber in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
This Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, photo taken in Newark, N.J., shows smartphones displaying Uber car availability in New York. Uber is offering car service in 250 cities in 50 countries now, up from 60 cities in 21 countries just a year ago. Uber hasn’t released its financial figures to the public, so valuing the company is pure guesswork. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
The Uber app is displayed on a phone posed for photos near a woman peering into a car outside a office building in Beijing, Friday, Jan. 9, 2015. China has banned drivers of private cars from offering services through ride-hailing apps, throwing up a new hurdle to Uber Technologies Ltd.'s global expansion. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
Baidu Chairman and CEO Robin Li speaks at a ceremony at the Baidu headquarters in Beijing on December 17, 2014. Baidu, China's leading search engine, and ride sharing company Uber announced a strategic investment and cooperation agreement on December 17. AFP PHOTO / Greg BAKER (Photo credit should read GREG BAKER/AFP/Getty Images)
The Uber app is seen on a smartphone past cabs waiting for clients near the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, on December 9, 2014. A judge on December 9, 2014 banned the popular smartphone taxi service Uber from operating in Spain, court officials said, following similar prohibition action in several other countries. AFP PHOTO/ QUIQUE GARCIA (Photo credit should read QUIQUE GARCIA/AFP/Getty Images)
The Uber app is seen on a smartphone past cabs waiting for clients near the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, on December 9, 2014. A judge on December 9, 2014 banned the popular smartphone taxi service Uber from operating in Spain, court officials said, following similar prohibition action in several other countries. AFP PHOTO/ QUIQUE GARCIA (Photo credit should read QUIQUE GARCIA/AFP/Getty Images)
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Existing Uber users will enter the promo code MADDCT2015. For every Uber ride taken between today and Friday at 11:59 p.m., Uber will donate $5 to MADD Connecticut.

"Events like this give us a chance to remind people that there are other ways to get home when you've been out celebrating," said Matt Powers, general manager of Uber Connecticut.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 945 drunk driving deaths across the country between Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve in 2014.

The recent report from the Connecticut state police showed an increase in holiday accidents this year. Of primary concern – the report showed that the number of arrests for driving under the influence more than doubled, from 19 last year to 40 in 2015.

"We find oftentimes that people do a better job of planning holiday dinners and holiday shopping than they do planning safe rides to and from events," said Fairfield Police Chief Gary MacNamara.

Recent evidence suggests that more and more people are using ride share services, like Uber, to avoid drinking and driving.

This past Thanksgiving eve, a night that features traditionally high incidence of drunken driving, saw a record number of Uber trips in Connecticut in one night.

From 7 p.m. until 2 a.m., when residents are typically coming or going to and from bars and restaurants, to meet with old friends, there were five times as many trips then on a typical Wednesday evening in Connecticut.

Uber says it has proven to help reduce drunken driving across America. For example, the company points out that DUI arrests in Seattle decreased by more than 10 percent after Uber started serving at riders and driver is in the city.

A recent independent study, conducted by Temple University, found that in cities where Uber operates, they have 3.6% to 5.6% few were drunk driving deaths than cities without access to this or other ridesharing services.

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