Alcohol a concern at Waste Management Phoenix OpenPosted: Updated:
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The evidence is everywhere you look at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, from a fully loaded bar at the Bird’s Nest, to a man passed out Friday near the 18th green, to an empty champagne bottle in the parking lot.
With alcohol flowing all day long, spectators say the event is considered more of cocktail party than a golf tournament, and police are fully staffed to keep the grounds safe.
"Really nothing shocks me anymore after what I’ve seen year after year," said Sgt. Jensen.
Sgt Jensen said law enforcement agencies valley wide are working together to use the Open as an opportunity to educate. Officers from MCSO, Gilbert Police, Tempe Police, Chandler Police, DPS, and Scottsdale Police are staged at the tournament’s exit, offering a basic breathalyzer test to anyone who wants one.
It’s all part of the "Know Your Limit" program, funded by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety.
".164 it's considered an extreme DUI,” Scottsdale Police Officer Kevin Reynolds told one man, after testing him. "I know that's why I'm not driving."
"A cab is so much cheaper than a DUI," said Eric Seufert who admitted he’s had a DUI before.
"Unfortunately, you learned your lesson the hard way," said Officer Reynolds.
With a BAC of .110 following a day of watching golf Friday, Seufert said he had no intention of driving home.
"That’s what this is, this is a party," said Seufert. "They come to drink. Hopefully most get a cab home."
DUI Sgt. Tom Jensen of Scottsdale Police says the awareness program appears to be working. He said since its first year, the number of arrests for impaired drivers was cut in half from 120 arrests in 2012 to 60 arrests last year.