Super Bowl host VP fears game day limo shortage will go viral

Companies are 300 to 400 vehicles short of what’s needed for the event

Police on horseback patrol past Mercedes-Benz Stadium ahead of Sunday’s NFL Super Bowl 53 football game between the Los Angeles Rams and New England Patriots in Atlanta on Jan. 30, 2019. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Limousine companies are blaming the state of Georgia for leaving them 300 to 400 vehicles short of what’s needed to transport NFL owners, corporate clients and Very Important People this Super Bowl weekend.

Amy Patterson, vice-president of operations and logistics with Atlanta’s Super Bowl Host Committee, said in a letter to Georgia’s public safety commissioner that she fears this will become a “viral news story” and “a black eye for the state.”

READ MORE: Super Bowl 53 — What you need to know to be game-day ready

State law bars out-of-state limousines that aren’t insured and registered in Georgia. Limousine firms say they should get an exemption for special events such as the Super Bowl. The state’s public safety chief says he won’t allow it.

The concerns were first reported by Atlanta’s Fox affiliate, WAGA-TV.

“We are begging Gov. Kemp to step in and protect the people of Atlanta, the people of Georgia, the people coming in from out of town to allow us to safely handle their transportation,” said Jeff Greene, president of the Greater Atlanta Limousine Association. Greene calls the situation “extremely, extremely urgent.”

Kemp said he’s leaving it up to Georgia’s Department of Public Safety commissioner, Col. Mark McDonough, and the colonel says he won’t bend.

READ MORE: Carrie Bradshaw, ‘The Dude’ to star in Super Bowl commercial

McDonough said the law is needed for public safety, noting that chauffeured vehicles have been involved in deadly accidents.

“They’re basically asking the colonel of state patrol to set aside state law. That’s kind of brash,” McDonough told WAGA-TV . “That’s not something I’m going to give permission to do.”

Greene said limousine firms were allowed to use out-of-state vehicles to handle the crush of VIPs during the 1996 Olympic Games and the 2000 Super Bowl in Atlanta. But McDonough said he can’t find written proof that was allowed to happen.

The situation is between the limousine companies and the state, a representative of the Super Bowl Host Committee said in a Friday email to The Associated Press.

In a separate email to the AP, Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau spokesman Heather Kirksey said “we aren’t aware of a transportation shortage.”

But limousine company owner Fred Rich said “we’re going to have to break major contracts.”

“We’re going to have to tell major, major corporate clients we can’t handle their VIP travellers,” Rich said.

Authorities have been urging everyone else to use public transportation.

The Associated Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Let the Games begin!

Team Alberta takes home gold and silver in speed skating on day one

WATCH: Historic night in Red Deer as 2019 Canada Winter Games kicks off

Star-studded Opening Ceremony features athletes from across Canada

Athletes’ medals unveiled at the official kick-off of 2019 Canada Winter Games

Medals depict Central Alberta landscape and pay tribute to First Nations

Sylvan Lake looks to add an adopt-a-road program

A policy for the newly proposed program will come forward to council at a later date

WATCH: Canada Winter Games are finally here

Final leg of torch relay kicked off at Fort Normandeau

Fashion Fridays: Up your beauty game

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

‘Mitts don’t just warm hands. They warm hearts’: Mitts for Many Program launches

Donate new or lightly used mittens to bin in the Great Hall of the Gary W. Harris Centre

LOCATED: Innisfail RCMP looking for missing woman

Amanda Kucher was last seen at the Innisfail 7-Eleven on Feb. 15

Red Deer RCMP arrest man after vehicle theft from dealership

Police were able to disable the SUV with assistance from the built-in vehicle assistance system

Red Deer College transforms into Athletes’ Village

Red Deer College’s campus will be home for the athletes during the 2019 Canada Winter Games

Alberta minor hockey team, slammed for Indigenous dance video, forfeits season

Parents say season was too dangerous to finish because the team has been threatened

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Alix resident captures beams of light near Lacombe

Lacombe, Blackfalds, Red Deer photos have since gone viral around the world

Most Read