CHP officers team up with drunk driving victim for DUI awareness during Super Bowl weekend

In the midst of Super Bowl weekend, law enforcement officers are warning people not to drink and drive and one victim of drunk driving is helping to spread that message.

Police will be out on the roads in full force, looking for impaired drivers like the one who struck Annette Barrera eight years ago in Lynwood.

"I crossed the road, was at the front of the group and I got hit by a drunk driver. He was going 45 miles per hour," she said.

Barrera was nearly killed and spent 71 days in a coma, suffering from a severe brain and spinal cord injury that led to partial paralysis on one side of her body.

"This is my life now. I mean, I cannot get away from this information. Drunk driving, the impacts of it, is going to be forever impacting my life."

That's why she teamed up with the California Highway Patrol and several other organizations, spreading awareness of sober driving on Super Bowl Sunday.

However, the Auto Club of Southern California is stressing that alcohol isn't the only substance of concern.

"Now, we are really putting a lot of focus as well on don't drive while high, and it's a traffic safety concern for the entire nation now," said spokesman Doug Shupe, noting the 11 states that have legalized recreational marijuana, including California.

Over the last five Super Bowl Sundays, the CHP reports more than 1,100 people across the state were arrested for DUI. Sixty-seven people were killed or seriously injured in crashes.

Alongside the officers, Barrera is doing anything she can to help reduce those numbers this year.

"I wish I didn't get hit by a car, but I'm leading a stronger life today."
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