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State groups urging St. Pat’s revelers to avoid DUIs
by Staff Reports
March 14, 2014 01:35 PM | 1560 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety and safe and sober driving coalition TEAM Georgia announced Friday they have paired up once again to make sure Georgia motorists know if they drive impaired this St. Patrick’s Day, they’ll need a lot more than the luck of the Irish to get out of trouble.

Georgia has a zero tolerance policy toward driving over the .08 blood alcohol limit. The office and TEAM Georgia want those celebrating popular drinking holidays like St. Patrick’s Day to have fun with friends and family, but also remember if they are over the limit behind the wheel, they’ll be under arrest.

Last year, 161 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes in Georgia. That number has increased by more than 6 percent since 2012. The 9,300 alcohol-related crashes last year also resulted in 5,644 injuries.

“We’ve lost far too many people on Georgia’s roads to drunk driving,” said office Director Harris Blackwood. “Don’t be another number on that list this year. Designate a sober driver before you make your first toast.”

TEAM Georgia’s mission is to foster safe and sober driving habits on the state’s roads and waterways. GOHS part-nered with them Friday to warn people who will be celebrating in Atlanta, that a safe ride home is just a phone call or smartphone tap away.

“We want to remind drivers of the negative things that can happen if they decide to navigate our roads after drinking on St. Patrick’s Day,” said TEAM Georgia Chairman Ron Fennel. “Secure a sober, designated driver before your night begins, or simply call a taxi or use GOHS’s smartphone app so you and your party can arrive home safely.”

Law enforcement patrols will be stepped up during St. Patrick’s Day, and the office is also asking partygoers to uti-lize its Drive Sober, Georgia app. If revelers find themselves without a sober ride home, they can download the app (available on both Apple and Android markets) to search a database of safe and sober ride options in their area. Some programs are free and some are fee-based, but either way, the Drive Sober, Georgia app means there is no excuse for driving home drunk.

There are a few more easy ways to ensure a safe and happy St. Patrick’s Day: plan a safe way home before the festivities, designate a sober driver ahead of time and leave your car keys at home, use a taxi, call a sober friend or use public transportation to get home safely, contact police if you see a drunk driver and be prepared to take someone’s keys away and find them a safe ride home if they’re too drunk to drive.

Information: Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, (404) 656-6996 or www.gahighwaysafety.org; TEAM Georgia, (770) 490-1243 or www.teamgeorgia.net
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