SAYRE, PA (WENY) -- The Greater Valley EMS held their twenty-sixth annual "Safe Ride Home" program on Sunday.
The not-for-profit organization started the program as a way to help cut down the number of DUI accidents on New Years Eve.
"Somebody came up with the idea that it'd be great if we didn't have people out there drinking and driving, because you know how that is," said said Greater Valley EMS member and Safe Ride Home Coordinator, Fran Webb. "They just came up with this idea to provide the rides. We used to use our own vehicles, we're actually now co-sponsored, I guess you could say, by Williams Auto Group. They provide all the vehicles that we use free of charge."
Through the program, residents can be picked up and dropped off within a ten-mile radius of Sayre.
The way it works is you can either call in advance and schedule a pick up and drop off time.
Or, if you're already at a party, you can call them and they'll pick you up.
All while being free of charge.
"Anything we can do to keep the drunks from driving is what we're here to do," said Webb. "We want to help make New Years Eve fun for everybody. Whether you're having too much to drink, or just out there having a good time or just driving to and from to visit friends for the holiday."
Each New Years Eve, anywhere between two-hundred and fifty to three-hundred people use the program.
But even though it means a late night for the EMS volunteers, they say it's more important to get everyone home safe and sound.
"It's just great to be able to do something positive for the community," said Webb. "Normally we see people when they're hurt and sick. This way we can get them before that happens. We have been able to, in the last several years, have zero incidents as far as DUI related accidents or such in our coverage area. So it proves the service is working."
For more information about the program, you can call the Greater Valley EMS at (570) 888-6000 Ext. 300.