steps to stay safe this St- Patrick’s Day
When I think about St. Patrick’s Day, there are a few words that come to mind: Irish, green, shamrocks, rainbows, gold, and beer.
With 149 million people in the United States celebrating on Saint Patrick’s Day – an incredible figure for a holiday that is not legally recognized as a holiday.
St. Patrick’s Day is the most popular holiday for beer drinking with the average person having 4.2 drinks and 32% of adult admitting to binge drinking. On St. Patrick’s Day beer sales increase 174% and spirit sales increase 153%.
Unfortunately, a holiday that celebrates drinking, leads to drunk driving and alcohol-related accidents. These accidents are often fatal. In 2018, 73 people in the US were killed in drunk driving crashes over on St. Patrick’s Day.
Safety is our top priority so here are some tips to help keep you protected and to avoid any alcohol-related injuries.
Create a plan for your St. Patrick’s Day activities
1) Designate a driver. Under no circumstances should you drink and drive. Have a volunteer or designate someone to remain sober for the duration of the evening.
2) Have a backup driver plan. If no one volunteers to be the designated driver or your designated driver is unexpectantly unable to go out, make sure you have an alternate plan to get home. Options include calling an Uber or Lyft, asking a sober friend for a ride, or renting a room at a nearby hotel. Also remember that many cities and bard offer safe driving alternatives on St. Patrick’s Day, so check to see if your location for the evening is partnering with taxis, Uber, or Lyft.
3) Don’t bring valuables. In most cases, a night out for St. Patrick’s Day will not require you to wear expensive jewelry and accessories. Limit yourself to the necessities, such as a small amount of cash and your phone. The less you bring, the less you risk losing.
Be aware of your surrounding when at the bars
4) Hydrate and eat. Don’t drink on an empty stomach and keep your belly full with Irish specialties, such as a shepherd’s pie or corned beef sandwich. Drink water to stay hydrated.
5) Stay by your drinks. Always remain by your drink and never leave it unattended. You should also never accept a drink that has been opened for you.
6) Watch out for your friends. Friends don’t let friends drive drunk. The motto holds true especially on holidays such as St. Patrick’s Day. If your friend is intoxicated and looks like they’re about to get behind the wheel, take their keys and arrange a different way to get them home.
If you are the designated drive, take extra precautions
Celebrate at home instead of going out
9) Host the party. Consider hosting a party at your home instead of going out to a bar. It’s a safer setting where you can control the flow of alcohol. It also allows you to…
10) Let friends to stay the night. Another benefit of having a party at home is having a safe place for friends to sleep. If they drink too much, take their keys and arrange an area for them to rest until the morning.
Don’t forget to wear green (unless you want to be pinched!) and keep you and your friends safe this St. Patrick’s Day by following these tips. We hope you have a safe and festive holiday!
For more information on drunk driving, visit NHTSA and MADD.
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