HENNEPIN — The Putnam County Sheriff’s Office announced it will conduct special patrols on St. Patrick’s Day — Tuesday, March 17 — to crack down on impaired drivers and encourage people to wear their seat belts.
Celebrated throughout the country, St. Patrick’s Day is one of the deadliest holidays of the year because of the number of drunken drivers on the road.
“If you’ll be drinking or using another impairing substance, plan ahead for a sober ride home,” Putnam County Sheriff Kevin Doyle said. “We urge our community residents and visitors to enjoy St. Patrick’s Day responsibly. We’ll be out in force to keep impaired drivers off the roads and help ensure that everyone makes it home safely,” Doyle said.
Before the green beer starts flowing, revelers are asked to remember to designate a sober driver.
“If you don’t have a designated driver, call a cab, use a ride-sharing service, have a sober friend or family member pick you up, or stay where you are and sleep it off. Never let a friend leave your sight if you think they’re about to drive impaired, and always buckle up — it’s your best defense in a crash,” Doyle said.
Doyle noted that pedestrians are at risk, too. “If you are walking, keep an eye out for cars. If you’re a designated driver, be alert for impaired walkers who may not obey street signs and pedestrian signals,” he said.
The Illinois “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” and “Click It or Ticket” campaigns are administered by the Illinois Department of Transportation with federal highway safety funds managed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.