Georgia plans crack down on drunk drivers during St. Patrick’s Day weekend


ATLANTA, Ga — When you think of shamrock day in Georgia, Savannah probably pops in your head today. But throughout the state, revelers will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  Since so many will be drinking, the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety is sending out the message loud and clear: Drunk drivers will get no second chances.

“There is millions of dollars spent by the government to let you know ahead of time not to don’t drink and drive.  There is no reason for you to get behind the wheel and drive drunk,” says SFC John Cronin of the Georgia State Patrol.

The aggressive campaign against drunk drivers seems to be working.  According to Georgia statistics, deaths on state roadways during the St. Patrick’s Day period has decreased since 2013.

“If you are impaired to where you shouldn’t be driving, you are going to jail, “ says SFC Cronin.  “There is no excuse for it, and we are not going to take any excuses for it.”

This year, the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety is launching what it calls Team Georgia— encouraging not only drivers, but even those in the hospitality industry to help look for those who may have had one too many.

The best idea, however, is to plan ahead and have a designated driver.

“We want people to make plans on how they are going to get home, designating a driver, using a ride service, calling a taxi or getting a hotel room.  Whatever you do, make plans on how you are going to get home,” says Harris Blackwood, Director of the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety.

The state has also developed the Drive Sober Georgia smart phone app.  The app helps users find rides home if they go out and find themselves too intoxicated to drive.  That way, they don’t take the risk of getting behind the wheel and hurting themselves or anyone else.

Here are some other suggestions from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety to stay safe:

  • Plan a safe way home before the partying begins
  • Designate a sober driver before you start drinking and leave your car keys at home
  • Use a taxi, call a sober friend or use public transportation if you’re too impaired to drive
  • Contact local law enforcement if you see a drunk driver
  • Be prepared to take away someone’s keys and find them a sober ride home

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