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This St. Paddy’s Day, Don’t Rely on Luck: Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving
Leesburg, VA (March 13, 2018) St. Patrick’s Day is one of the most popular holidays in the United States. The holiday is often associated with heavy drinking. This can lead to dangerous driving conditions as party-goers head home. The selfish act of drinking and driving can rip people from their friends and loved ones forever. For this reason, the Leesburg Police Department in partnership with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is working to spread the message about the dangers of drunk driving.
Tragically, March 17 has become a dangerous holiday on our nation’s roads. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), during the 2016 St. Patrick’s Day holiday period, almost two-thirds (39%) of all motor vehicle crash fatalities involved drunk drivers. The early hours of March 18 didn’t fare much better. Between midnight and 5:59 a.m., nearly three-fourths (69%) of all crash fatalities involved drunk drivers. In fact, from 2012 to 2016, almost two-fifths (38%) of the drunk-driving fatalities during this holiday period involved drivers who had blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) well above the .08 limit, with 269 drunk-driving fatalities total. Drivers should also keep an eye out for pedestrians who have had too much to drink. Walking while intoxicated can also be deadly, as lack of attention to their surroundings could put pedestrians at risk of getting hit by a vehicle.
The Leesburg Police Department recommends the following safe alternatives to drinking and driving:
• First: Always remember to plan ahead. You know whether you’ll attend a party. If you plan to drink, plan for a sober driver to take you home. Is it your turn to be the designated driver? Take that role seriously—your friends could be relying on you.
• Remember that it is never okay to drink and drive. Even if you’ve only had one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation to get home safely.
• Download NHTSA’s SaferRide mobile app available on Google Play for Android devices and Apple’s iTunes Store for iOS devices. SaferRide allows users to call a taxi or a predetermined friend, and identifies the user’s location so he or she can be picked up.
• Utilize an on-demand private driver service such as Uber or Lyft.
• If you see a drunk driver on the road, immediately contact local police.
• Have a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and make arrangements to get them home safely.
For more information visit www.nhtsa.gov.
Officer Sam Shenouda, Public Information Officer
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org . 703-771-4538