Usually during certain holidays, Missouri police officers put in extra hours because they know there will be drunk drivers on the roadway. You can see an increase in roving patrols and DUI checkpoints around Thanksgiving, New Year’s Eve, Fourth of July, and St. Patrick’s Day. According to a LakeExpo.com news report, the Osage Beach Police Department will be out in full force from March 14-17 between 7 p.m. and 3 a.m. this year as part of the annual nationwide St. Patrick’s Day Holiday DWI enforcement.
During St. Patrick’s Day holiday in 2014, there were 247 DWI arrests made in Missouri. It is unclear how many drivers got home safely and avoided arrest. What we do know is people like to drink on and around St. Patrick’s Day and some of them fail to call a cab or to assign a designated driver.
Please use caution if you are on the roadway around St. Patrick’s Day. Slow down and keep an eye on your surroundings if you are in a busy area near bars, taverns, and clubs. You should also watch out for intoxicated pedestrians who may step onto the roadway at an unexpected time and location. Always wear your seatbelt.
If you are driving and you see a vehicle moving erratically, keep your distance. Intoxicated drivers are more likely to swerve in traffic, exceed the speed limit, miss stop signs, and generally behave in an unpredictable manner. If you have a passenger in your car, have him or her call the authorities and tell them the license number and location of the car. If you are alone, pull over before calling the police. Your tip could help prevent an accident.
If you are going out to have a few drinks or join a party, it is advisable to plan ahead. Have travel arrangements made before you go out so you don’t have to worry about how to get home later. If you don’t have a designated driver in your group, take a taxi to the gathering so you are not tempted to drive home. Remember, buzzed driving is impaired driving. Stay safe this St. Patrick’s Day.