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Data Shows 700 People Died in Motor Vehicle Crashes Involving Drunk Drivers on St. Patrick’s Day From 2006 to 2010

Don’t push your luck this St. Patrick’s Day, Drive sober or get pulled over!

Warren County- As St. Patrick's Day approaches, Warren County Safe Communities Coalition (WCSCC) is reminding drivers not to get behind the wheel if they've been drinking. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports more than 700 people were killed nationwide in crashes involving a drunk driver during the St. Patrick’s Day holiday from 2006 to 2010.

“No matter how you may be celebrating this St. Patrick’s Day, it is of upmost importance to do so responsibly,” says Joey Brumfield, Trauma Outreach Coordinator at Atrium Medical Center and Coordinator of WCSCC, “Whether you are at a local pub or at a party, be sure not to push your luck and do not drive under the influence of alcohol.”

Traditionally, the month of March alone has been a tragic month regarding motor vehicle related fatalities. In 2012, the Ohio Department of Public Safety (ODPS) reports 50 alcohol related traffic fatalities in March alone, second only to the month of July. “Holidays such as St. Patty’s Day involve many celebrations, most of which involve alcohol,” says Brumfield, “Because of this, more often than not the celebration turns in to tragedy.”

According to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), every 51 minutes a person is killed in an alcohol related traffic crash in the United States and the majority of these crashes involve drunk drivers who have blood alcohol levels of .15 grams per deciliter or higher, almost twice the legal limit. Last year alone, 415 people were killed in alcohol related crashed in the State of Ohio.

2012 was a devastating and tragic year for motor vehicle and traffic related fatalities throughout Warren County. According to the Ohio Department of Public Safety (OPDS), 28 traffic related fatalities were reported throughout the county, an increase of more than 130% from 2011. Several factors have contributed to the increase in the number of fatalities we have seen in 2012 and drinking and driving remains at the forefront. It is imperative that we continue to raise awareness on the dangers and many risk associated with driving under the influence of alcohol

During this year’s St. Patrick’s Day festivities, WCSCC will be partnering with local Law Enforcement and coalition members to support campaign efforts by distributing customized drink coasters to local pubs and bars throughout Warren County. WCSCC and all partners want to encourage everyone to help keep our roadways safe. Designate a sober driver prior to leaving for your festivities and program the phone number to your local taxi service in you cell phone as an emergency back up. Remember that any level of alcohol impairment significantly increases your risk for being involved in a motor vehicle collision and that buzzed driving is drunk driving. Law enforcement will be cracking down. Don’t push your luck this St. Patrick’s Day and keep our Warren County roadways safe. Drive sober or get pulled over!

For more information about the Ohio Traffic Safety Office and statewide efforts to improve safety on Ohio’s roadways, visit http://ohiohighwaysafetyoffice.ohio.gov/. Off Site Icon

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