LOGAN — Law enforcement is reminding motorists, if you plan on celebrating St. Patrick’s Day by raising a pint of your favorite alcoholic beverage, make sure you also plan ahead for a sober ride home.
The Utah Highway Patrol reports that with St. Patrick’s Day falling on a Friday night during the NCAA basketball tournament, many people will celebrate all weekend. To help make sure everyone gets where they’re going safely, officers from 27 law enforcement agencies statewide will be working over 150 extra DUI enforcement shifts. The Utah Highway Patrol will also be conducting DUI blitzes on Friday night.
Utah Highway Patrol DUI Squad Commander Lt. Brent Shelby said, “If you choose to drink this St. Patrick’s Day, designate a sober, reliable driver to get you home safely from the party. If you’re planning on drinking, do not drive. Many people don’t understand that they pose a risk to themselves and others on the road before they even feel buzzed. Our Troopers and other law enforcement officers will be actively looking for and removing impaired drivers from our roads.”
St. Patrick’s Day continuously ranks as one of the most dangerous holidays on our nation’s roads. Between 2015 and 2019, 280 people died in drunk driving crashes from 6 p.m. March 16 to 5:59 a.m. March 18, including 57 in 2019 alone, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Over three out of five crashes involved a drunk driver over St. Patrick’s Day in 2019.
So far in 2023, Utah has had 152 alcohol-related crashes. There have been 41 fatalities, three of those being alcohol-related.