Arizona’s later bar-closing time has pumped up liquor sales and drunken-driving arrests in some cities since August, when last call was extended one hour to 2 a.m., reports the Arizona Republic. But alcohol-related crashes dipped 2.3 percent and fatalities plummeted 40 percent statewide in the first four months since the change, according to figures from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety.
The spike in drunken-driving arrests and crashes has moved an hour later. Bar owners say they are seeing a noticeable increase in business, particularly on weekends when more customers stay out late. Supporters of the later last call, including restaurant and tourism interests, said it would boost state tax revenue and keep Arizona in stride with other tourism destinations with closing times of 2 a.m. or later. Opponents feared it would increase drunken-driving risks by giving nightclub patrons an extra hour to drink.