After work, many people like to head to the bar on the way home to have a drink or two with friends. While you can do this in Boston, or across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, you aren’t going to find any drink specials or other discounts like you do in other parts of the country due to a roughly 30-year-old law prohibiting bars and restaurants from offering happy hour specials.
The reason for this law, one that a number of other states also enacted, was to cut down on the number of drunk driving accidents that had reached alarming rates. It was fairly easy to connect people getting discount drinks before their drive home with the number of drunk driving accidents, some of which are fatal or result in serious personal injury.
However, according to a recent news feature from Mass Live, the Boston-based makers of an app aimed at helping friends go out after work, has started a petition to bring happy hour back to Boston and the rest of the Commonwealth. The company reports that it has around 7,000 signatures on the petition to date. This company gives people a free round of drinks when they sign up for the app, so clearly happy hour and social drinking is an integral part of its business model.
They claim that since we now have casinos in the Commonwealth and medical marijuana is now legal, happy hour should be allowed as well. The ban of happy hour specials occurred at the same time the national drinking age was raised to 21. Prior to that it was 18 in much of the nation and 20 in Massachusetts. They also argue that since the number of drunk driving fatalities has fallen substantially over the years, it is time to make a change. In 1984, for example, there were 362 drunk driving deaths in Massachusetts, and in 2011 there were 133.
There is no question that this is significant achievement, but as our Boston drunk driving accident attorneys have seen, death is not the only result of drunk driving accidents. Many drunk driving accidents result in serious personal injury with life-altering consequences, but do not result in death.
One of the reasons for that is the advance in medicine over the past few decades. In the 1980s, many of the victims of a Boston drunk driving car crash would have died, but today they can be saved. While this is step forward, it does not mean that people should be encouraged to drink more before getting behind the wheel of motor vehicle.
The petition is being sent to the Boston mayor. It is not clear how that would affect a statewide ban, but in any event, the mayor has said he has no intention of lifting the bad in a citywide level. He said he knows that it might not be the most popular position, but he is against happy hour in Boston. He said that he always has, because studies show that happy hour leads to increased incidents of drunk driving.
If you or someone you love has been injured a Boston drunk driving accident, call for a free and confidential appointment at (617) 777-7777.
Boston-based company advocates for return of happy hour in Massachusetts, July 4, 2016, Mass Live, By Michelle Williams
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