(Dodge County) With today being St. Patrick’s Day, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation is urging residents to practice caution when celebrating the holiday. Citing the potential for impaired driving associated with St. Patrick’s Day festivities, the DOT reminds residents that law enforcement agencies across Wisconsin will be keeping a sharp eye out for impaired drivers. Department of Transportation Director, David Pabst, warns “if you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and get arrested for impaired driving, you’re going to lose a lot of green.” He goes on to say that “an OWI conviction can easily cost $10,000 when you include fines, legal fees, court costs, lost work time, and higher insurance rates.” Beyond this, impaired driving also risks the safety of everyone on and along our roadways.
To help ensure a safe holiday the DOT alongside state law enforcement agencies have offered the following suggestions.
- Buckle up! Every trip, every passenger.
- Feeling buzzed? Don’t get behind the wheel, take public transit, a taxi, or ask a sober friend for a ride home. Buzzed driving is drunk driving.
- Be observant. Never allow an impaired person to get behind the wheel. If you observe a driver you suspect is impaired, call 911.
- Visit “Safe Ride” taverns and restaurants which provide patrons a safe ride home. A list is available at TLW.org
- Download the Wisconsin DOT’s free Drive Sober mobile app that includes a designated driver selector and a find-a-ride feature to identify transportation alternatives.
Pabst warns that law enforcement officers are well-trained to spot impaired drivers and will be keeping a sharp eye out with a primary goal of discouraging drivers from ever making the dangerous and irresponsible decision to get behind the wheel impaired.