If you plan to head out and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day tomorrow, it’s important to remember to have a designated sober driver.
The State Highway Patrol will be out in full force with some additional units for this weekend as part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s “Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving campaign”. If you notice a driver on the road that seems to be under the influence, it is important to notify authorities in an effort to keep the roads as safe as possible.
“Drunk driving or impaired driving is generally some form of erratic driving on the part of the motorists. What we ask people to do is call that in and report it. The best way to do that is #677. Report what you are seeing, describe what you’re seeing, and let our officers take a look at it and make some determinations,” Sergeant Jeffrey P. Jirles stated.
Last year, 200 people were arrested for a OVI in Muskingum County which is right around the average per year locally. This year, 56 motorists have been charged with an OVI in Muskingum County. State wide, over the last five years, there have been 219 crashes with 128 injuries and 10 deaths on St. Patrick’s Day. It is also the responsibility of the establishments that serve alcohol to make sure nobody is being over served, and there will be an Ohio Investigative Unit to enforce that.
“Those are folks that might be in civilian clothes sitting beside someone at a liquor establishment just to make sure that the owners of those businesses are not over serving people, or serving someone that’s underage.They could be sitting at the table next to you and you don’t even know it,” said Jirles.
The goal is to get home safely and keep the roadways safe and clear. Remember to establish a designated driver and have a plan to get home before you go out. As a reminder, you can dial #677 to report any impaired motorists.