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HPD cracking down on buzzed driving during St. Patrick’s Day

By submitted, 03/4/22 6:54 PM

HOPE – St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in America date back to the country’s founding.

While this year’s celebration may continue to look a little different in your hometown, however you celebrate, make sure you and your friends stay safe this St. Paddy’s Day by remembering one important piece of advice: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving. This means that if you plan to drink, it’s essential that you plan ahead for a sober ride home. Remember: A sober driver is one who hasn’t had any alcohol. The Hope Police Department is teaming up with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to spread the message about the dangers of drunk driving. Even one drink can be one too many.

“We understand people are looking for a reason to celebrate, and we want our community members to enjoy St. Patrick’s Day, but we also want to impress upon everyone the importance of safe driving,” said Assistant Chief Tomlin. “If you’ve been drinking, make the right choice to find a sober driver to get you and your friends’ home safely”.

During the 2019 St. Patrick’s Day period (6 p.m. March 16 to 5:59 a.m. March 18), almost half (46%) of crash fatalities involved a drunk driver. In fact, from 2015 to 2019, a total of 280 lives were lost in drunk-driving crashes during the St. Patrick’s Day period. 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. 

“Drunk drivers are a continuing problem on our nation’s roads, especially around days like St. Patrick’s Day,” said Assistant Chief Tomlin. “People need to know that they can go out for a night of fun and return home safely by ensuring they have a sober driver take them home. Don’t be the reason someone — including yourself — doesn’t get home. Don’t let St. Patrick’s Day become an anniversary of a tragic night.”