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March 14, 2013
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It takes more than luck of the Irish to avoid a DUI

Motorists are reminded not to rely on luck when it comes to avoiding an arrest for driving under the influence this St. Patrick’s Day.

The California Highway Patrol is encouraging celebrants to plan a safe way home and designate a nondrinking driver before the festivities begin.

Last year on St. Patrick’s Day, the CHP made more than 300 arrests statewide for DUI, according to the CHP’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System. Additionally, provisional figures from SWITRS for that day indicate at least three people were killed in California in alcohol-involved collisions.

To prevent additional loss of life and ensure everyone enjoys a safe, festive holiday, the CHP joins with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration by recommending the following simple steps:

— Make arrangements for a safe trip home before the festivities begin.

— Before drinking, designate a nondrinking driver and leave your car keys at home.

— If you are impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member or use public transportation so you are sure to get home safely.

— If you suspect an impaired driver is on the road, report that driver by calling 911. Callers should be prepared to give a description of the vehicle, license plate number, location and the vehicle’s direction of travel.

— And remember, if you know people who are about to drive or ride with someone who is impaired, help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely. If a friend is drunk and wants to drive, encourage them not to, even if it means taking his keys away.

“Luck is not going to prevent drunk driving collisions from happening. Drivers making responsible decisions can prevent a needless tragedy,” said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow. “At the end of the day, a little bit of prevention can be the difference in saving a life.”

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The Union Updated Mar 14, 2013 09:06PM Published Mar 14, 2013 09:06PM Copyright 2013 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.