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"Lyft Up Charlotte” Project to Provide Alternatives to Driving Impaired During the Holidays


RALEIGH- Charlotte residents will have new options to stay safe this holiday season thanks to a unique partnership of local groups, state traffic safety experts, and a major ride share provider.  

The Governors Highway Safety Association and the national rideshare company Lyft are teaming up with the North Carolina Governor’s Highway Safety Program (NCGHSP) and local partners for the “Lyft Up Charlotte” project. It will provide $10 Lyft ride credits for patrons from Dec. 14 through Jan. 3, 2021. The program coincides with the state’s h​oliday “Booze It & Lose It” campaign.  
Local partners include Atrium Health, the City of Charlotte, Charlotte Department of Transportation, Vision Zero Task Force, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and Mothers Against Drunk Driving North Carolina  
The project will focus on Plaza Midwood, North Davidson (NODA), the University Area, South End and Montford Drive areas.  
The “Lyft Up Charlotte” project is funded through a grant jointly administered by the national Governor’s Highway Safety Association and Lyft. 
Interested riders can download the Lyft app and use the ride code “KeysFreeNC” to receive the $10 ride credit. The campaign will also distribute face coverings to Lyft customers, restaurants, bars and grocery stores. The ride credits will be available from Dec. 14 until Jan. 3 in the evenings, in compliance with the governor’s executive order. 
“We know that driving while impaired is still causing serious injuries, death, broken families, and added stress for our Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department officers,” Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles said. “Through the creation of Lyft up Charlotte, we welcome the opportunity to team up with the N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program, Lyft, and Atrium Health to add more protections for Charlotte drivers, passengers, and their loved ones.” 
"Impaired driving is an old problem in search of new solutions," said NCGHSP Director Mark Ezzell. "The Lyft Up Charlotte project is an innovative way to partner with Charlotte leaders to utilize Lyft's strong footprint to make Queen City roads safer during the holiday season." 
This program is even more critical this year as recently released National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data for the first half of 2020 found that while traffic volume was down significantly, alcohol-related fatalities did not fall at a similar rate. North Carolina drivers who were on the road during this period were also more likely to engage in risky behaviors such as speeding, drunk driving and not buckling up.  
“At Atrium Health, we continue — even during COVID-19 — to see over 50 percent of our road victims with serious injuries present with some level of impairment,” said Dr. Kyle Cunningham, trauma surgeon at Atrium Health, one of the project’s key partners. “We are glad to work with Lyft, the N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program and the City of Charlotte’s Vision Zero partners to promote a program for safe rides during the holidays. We also hope it will impact the way individuals make future decisions by demonstrating safe and available alternatives to driving while impaired."  
For those who have a social media platform, show NCGHSP how you are establishing good driving behaviors as a lifelong commitment. Mention @NCGHSP on Facebook and tag @NC_GHSP on Twitter and Instagram with #KeysFreeNC and #NCGHSP to show that you are celebrating this holiday season safely so you don’t “Booze It & Lose It.” For media inquiries, contact NCGHSP Communications Specialist Miracle King at (919) 814-3657 or


12/14/2020 12:00 PM