Residents can expect to encounter sobriety checkpoints, additional DWI patrols and increased inspections on underage drinking and sales to minors during the campaign, officials said.
“The New York State Police want everyone to have a fun St. Patrick’s Day weekend, but urge people to do it safely. If you attend a party or event and consume alcohol, designate a driver or find alternate transportation," New York State Police Superintendent Joseph D'Amico said in a press release.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 269 people were killed by drunk drivers on St. Patrick’s Day between 2007 and 2011.
State officials said during a similar weekend enforcement effort over St. Patrick's Day weekend last year troopers made 204 arrests for DWI and issued a total of 9,763 tickets.
The New York State Police and NHTSA recommend following these easy steps for everyone to enjoy a safe holiday, without jeopardizing lives on the road.
- Before the festivities begin, plan a way to safely get home at the end of the night.
- Before you start drinking, designate a sober driver and leave your car keys at home.
- If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation so you are sure to get home safely.
- If available, use your community’s sober ride program. Walking impaired can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. Designate a sober friend to walk you home.
- If you see a drunk driver on the road, call local law enforcement. You could save a life.
- And remember, if you know people who are about to drive or ride with someone who is impaired, help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely. If a friend is drunk and wants to drive, intervene and take the keys away if you have to.