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Superbowl Could Cause Car Accidents

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Researchers say the big game may lead to a big wreck. They say automobile crashes climb more than 40 percent in the hours after a Super Bowl.

Researchers examined US accident data around the times of the last 27 Super Bowls. They found fatal and nonfatal crashes rise after the game. The average increase is seven more deaths and 600 extra injuries. The researchers blame drinking during the game, driver fatigue because of the late hour, distraction and disappointment.

The surge is highest in the losing team€™s territory. Researchers think heartbroken fans, obsessing over the defeat, are not concentrating on driving.

One researcher suspects the wreck effect may appear, although with smaller increases in crash numbers, in less-watched games.

The researchers are at the University of Toronto in Canada. The study is in the New England Journal of Medicine.