AUSTIN, Texas - Mothers Against Drunk Driving is asking everyone to plan a safe ride home if they're planning to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. MADD says St. Patrick's Day continuously ranks as one of the most dangerous holidays on the nation's roads.
Between 2015 and 2019, MADD says 280 people died in drunk driving crashes from 6 p.m. March 16 to 5:59 a.m. March 18, including 57 in 2019 alone, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. More than three out of five crashes involved a drunk driver over St. Patrick’s Day in 2019.
In 2019, one person was killed every 52 minutes by a drunk driver. Another 300,000 were injured due to someone else’s bad choice.
"After a year of experiencing the pandemic, we know people may be looking for opportunities to celebrate – and that safety may not be top of mind," Azeza Salama of MADD's Central and South Texas Affiliate says in a news release. "It’s so important to arrange for a safe and sober ride home anytime your plans include alcohol."
"Buzzed driving is drunk driving. Even if you have had just one drink, please designate a non-drinking driver, take public transportation, or call a taxi or rideshare service," said Salama, who survived a head-on collision with a drunk driver in February 2016.
MADD also reminds everyone that it is illegal to drive while impaired by any substance, including legal and illegal drugs.
Founded by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, MADD is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to protect families from drunk driving and underage drinking. You can get more information about what they do here or by calling 1-877-ASK-MADD.