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Editorial: Halloween Party Safety Net

Make plans for a safe celebration; SoberRide safety net for those over 21.

Halloween is now a major holiday for adults, especially young adults, and also one of the major holidays each year that involve partying with alcohol and the risks of drinking and driving.

The Washington Regional Alcohol Project offers the SoberRide program for the holiday season from Christmas and holiday parties through New Years Day, Saint Patrick’s Day, Independence Day and Halloween, providing a safety net of a free cab ride home (up to $30) to keep would-be drunk drivers off the roads.

Of course if you, or the young adults you know, plan to be out for Halloween celebrations that will almost certainly include alcohol, make a plan now to do that partying within walking distance, near public transportation or to have a reliable designated driver.

But if someone finds themselves without safe and sober way home, the 2013 Halloween SoberRide program will be offered from 10 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 31 until 4 a.m., Friday, Nov. 1.

To receive a free cab ride home (up to a $30 fare), call 800-200-8294 (TAXI). AT&T customers may dial #WRAP from their wireless phones. To use the SoberRide service, you must be 21 or older.

Parents of teens who will be headed to parties on Halloween and the weekend after should know that it is likely those parties will include alcohol. Parents must be brave and talk to their teens about how they will get home safely since SoberRide is not available for anyone underage.

Remember that there are other hazards to drinking too much besides the risks of drinking and driving.

Weekly Reminder to Vote

Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 5., less than two weeks away.

Most voters qualify to vote early, called voting “absentee in person,” for a variety a reasons, and can do so until Saturday, Nov. 3.

Contact

Alexandria Board of Elections, 703-746-4050, http://alexandriava.gov/Elections, 132 North Royal Street, Alexandria, 22314; FAX 703-838-6449; email tom.parkins@alexandriava.gov

Fairfax County Board of Elections, 703-222-0776, www.fairfaxcounty.gov/eb/, 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, Suite 232, Fairfax, 22035; FAX 703-324-2205; email voting@fairfaxcounty.gov

Arlington Board of Elections, 703-228-3456, http://www.arlingtonva.us/vote, 2100 Clarendon Blvd., Suite 320, Arlington, 22201; FAX 703-228-3659; email voters@arlingtonva.us

City of Fairfax General Registrar, 703-385-7890, http://www.fairfaxva.gov/Registrar/GeneralRegistrar.asp, 10455 Armstrong Street, Sisson House, Fairfax, 22030; FAX 703-591-8364; email kevin.linehan@fairfaxva.gov

State Board of Elections, 804-864-8901 Toll Free: 800-552-9745 FAX: 804-371-0194, email: info@sbe.virginia.gov, http://www.sbe.virginia.gov/cms/Voter_Information/Index.html