The word from the legal world

Drunk Driving in Michigan on St. Patrick’s Day

Everyone looks for a little luck of the Irish on Saint Patrick’s Day, but March 17 is often unlucky for innocent motorists who are injured or killed at the hands of a drunk driver.

The festivities surrounding St. Patty’s Day make it a popular holiday to celebrate with friends and family in Michigan. This year, the holiday falls on a weekend, which means the crowds will be bigger and there will be even more people imbibing… and then getting behind the wheel.

St. Patrick’s Day Auto Accident Fatalities

Such a merry holiday, unfortunately, results in incredibly dangerous highways. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that over 700 people were killed nationwide in auto accidents involving a drunk driver during St. Patrick’s Day holidays from 2006 to 2010; 129 lives were lost in 2010 alone.

St. Patrick’s Day or not, on average, a person is killed in a drunk-driving crash in the United States every 51 minutes, according to the NHTSA. While law enforcement typically increases their patrols on March 17, and sobriety check points in Michigan are often established to catch drunk drivers, it’s important to take your own precautions to protect yourself and your loved ones from being involved in an auto accident.

Drunk-Driving Precautions on St. Patrick’s Day

Everyone can enjoy a jolly celebration of everything green and Irish on March 17 in Michigan. Make an effort to follow these easy steps to keep yourself safe, avoid auto accidents, and safeguard the lives of anyone else who is on the road:

  • Buzzed driving is drunk driving. Designate a sober driver before anyone begins drinking and have everyone else leave their keys at home.
  • If you’re impaired, call a cab, a sober friend, or use public transportation to get home safely.
  • Some Michigan communities have sober ride programs. Program the number of this service into your phone – and use it.
  • If you see a drunk driver on a Michigan highway, contact local law enforcement.
  • Don’t let anyone drive impaired – any level of impairment – or ride with someone who is impaired. Help your friends make other arrangements. Take their keys away if necessary.

Drunk drivers often face jail time, loss of driver licenses, higher insurance rates, and dozens of other unanticipated expenses ranging from court costs, car towing and repairs, to lost wages due to time off from work. Contact Femminineo Attorneys PLLC to learn about your rights and to discuss your auto accident or drunk driving case with personal injury attorney David C. Femminineo.