Harrisonburg Police Department Press Release
Harrisonburg, Va. - St. Patrick's Day is Monday, March 17, and the Harrisonburg Police Department is reminding drivers not to get behind the wheel if they have been drinking. In support of the nationwide St. Patrick's Day Impaired Driving Enforcement Campaign, HPD will employ extra patrols this weekend and conduct checkpoints throughout the city on St. Patrick's Day.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that on average, someone is killed every 53 minutes in a crash involving an intoxicated driver. "Drinking and driving is a prime concern throughout the year, and especially during the holidays," says HPD Traffic Officer Wayne Westfall, Jr. "St. Patrick's Day festivities often include frequenting pubs, restaurants, parties, and other activities, so it is important to celebrate responsibly, and if alcohol is involved, designate a sober driver or just take a cab," Westfall added.
HPD has made over 60 DUI-related arrests in 2014, and although this week's campaign focuses primarily on identifying impaired drivers, other traffic related violations will also be enforced. HPD recommends the following tips to help ensure a safe and happy St. Patrick's Day:
• Before the festivities begin, plan a way to safety get home if you are going to drink,
• Before drinking, designate a sober driver,
• If you are impaired, or feel buzzed, use a taxi, call a friend, or take the bus,
• If you see a drunk driver on the road, call the police. You could save a life.
For more information or statistics relating to the Harrisonburg Police Department's traffic or DMV sponsored enforcement programs, please contact Sgt Ritchie at (540) 810-5881. For more info on sponsored Impaired Driving Enforcement Campaigns, please visit www.nhtsa.gov