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On St. Patrick’s Day Count on a Designated Driver, Not Luck

March 16, 2016 | Category: Blog, DUI

When one thinks about St. Patrick’s Day, shamrocks, leprechauns, pots of gold and good luck may come to mind. However, there is no amount of luck that can save a driver from a drunk-driving crash. Statistics show every year there is a dramatic spike in drunk-driving fatalities resulting from St. Patrick’s Day celebrations on March 17. In fact, in the United States, March 17 is one of the deadliest days of the year. Celebrating is often ruined by drunk-driving accidents. 

Here are some soberiOn St. Patrick's Day Count on a Designated Driver, Not Luckng statistics from the National Law Enforcement Liaison Program: 

  • In every state, it is illegal to drive while impaired by alcohol.
  • Over St. Patrick’s Day from 2010 to 2014, there were a total of 266 lives lost in drunk-driving crashes.
  • 75% of fatal car crashes on St. Patrick’s Day involve a driver two times over the legal drinking limit.
  • Every 46 minutes, an alcohol-related crash claims a life on St. Patrick’s Day. 

These sobering statistics should be enough to dissuade drivers from drinking and driving. The consequences are many including personal, legal, and financial. 

Personal Consequences of DUI 

Being responsible for a DUI accident and its consequences can be a life-changing experience. MADD of Southwest Florida "Voices of Victims" shows the devastation caused by the thoughtlessness of DUI drivers.

Legal Consequences of DUI in Florida

Florida has a zero tolerance law for drivers under 21. Any driver under 21 who is stopped by law enforcement and has a blood alcohol level of 0.02 or higher will automatically have his/her Florida drivers’ license suspended for 6 months.

MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) reminds party hosts that if they host a party, they can be held liable and prosecuted if someone they serve ends up in an impaired-driving crash.

Financial Consequences of DUI

DUI convictions also include a hefty price tag. This includes items such as bail, vehicle towing or impound costs, court costs, legal fees, DUI education programs, an increase in insurance premiums, probation fees, drug and alcohol assessment and counseling, license reinstatement fees, and potential loss of work income. The Florida Department of Motor Vehicles estimates that even a first-time conviction may cost $8,000 or more.

The NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) reminds everyone that if you plan to “get your Irish on” that Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving. It urges the public to take the following safety precautions: 

  • Designate a sober driver or have an alternate transportation plan before the party begins. 
  • If you do not have a designated driver, you can use NHTSA’s SaferRide app to call a taxi or a friend. The app is available for Android devices on Google Play and Apple devices on iTunes. 
  • Never let a friend drive drunk. Arrange a safe way for them to get home. 
  • Do not ride in a vehicle with a driver who is intoxicated. 
  • Always buckle up. It’s still your best defense against drunk drivers. 

If you or a loved one has been the victim of a drunk-driving accident, contact the legal team at Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.,” said Hurt By Drunk Driver Attorney, Randall Spivey.

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