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Missouri Department of Transportation

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MoDOT News Release 

For more information, contact Revee White at 573-751-5414; or Melissa Black/Sandra Hentges at 573-526-4141.

March 12, 2009 12:00 AM
Don't Depend on Dumb Luck this St. Patrick's Day
You Drink & Drive. You Lose.

JEFFERSON CITY - The luck of the Irish may not be with you this St. Patrick's Day if you drink and drive. Keep the streets safe this St. Patrick's Day by drinking responsibly and designating a driver who has not been drinking before heading to the local parade or pub.

Law enforcement officers across Missouri will be cracking down on drunk driving with increased enforcement March 13-15.

"St. Patrick's Day is a time to celebrate the Irish heritage and gather with friends, but it can quickly end in tragedy due to impaired driving," said Leanna Depue, chair of the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety's executive committee. "If you plan on drinking, don't rely on luck to keep you safe, be responsible and take appropriate precautions."

Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show that over the past five years, 851 people lost their lives in motor vehicles crashes during the St. Patrick's Day holiday.  Out of that number, 327 were killed in crashes that involved a drunk driver or motorcycle rider (operator) with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher.

Follow these tips to ensure your night ends safely for all:

    • Designate a driver who has not been drinking before any drinking begins;
    • If you're impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation so you get home safely;
    • If you see an impaired driver on the road, contact your local law enforcement;
    • And remember, if you know someone who is about to drive impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get home safely.

"It's never worth the risk to drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol," Depue said. "Remember, You Drink & Drive. You Lose."

In Missouri in 2007, 243 people were killed and 4,889 were injured in drinking-related traffic crashes, resulting in a death or injury every 1.7 hours.

To learn more, please visit http://www.savemolives.com/.
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