Green beers, green shirts, green socks, everything green! On March 17, the Irish and the Irish-at heart across the globe observe St. Patrick’s Day. What once was a religious feast day for the saint of Ireland, has now become an international festival celebrating Irish cultures. With over 36 million people claiming Irish ancestry, on this day there is a lot that goes on including; dancing, parades, and drinking. Did we mention tons of drinking?
According to the National Highway Traffic Administration, St. Patrick’s Day is one of the most dangerous holidays to be on the road due to the number of drunk drivers. In 2012, more than 105 people died due to alcohol-impaired accidents, that means one death occurred every 51 minutes.
In New York, during the 2015 St. Patrick’s Day weekend, over 264 arrests were made for DWI drivers and more than 14,000 tickets were issued. Can you imagine if you and your family had driven next to one of those drivers?
Governor Cuomo recently announced the New York State Police and local law enforcement will initiate special St. Patrick’s Day traffic enforcement efforts. Therefore, you can expect a lot of sobriety checkpoints and additional DWI patrols through the weekend.
Buzzed driving is drunk driving no matter what. Do not put your life, or the lives of others, at risk by drinking and driving. Have a plan before you head out and ask someone to be your designated driver. Also, don’t risk losing your license, car, job, insurance, and money for one mistake. Even walking drunk can be dangerous, as a lack of attention may put you at risk of getting hit by a vehicle.
The National Highway Traffic Administration has created an app called “SaferRide” for Apple and Android phones. The app allows you to call a taxi or a friend, and provides you with your exact location so you can be picked up.
Remember have a happy and SAFE St. Paddy’s day!