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We’ve all heard of leprechauns, green beer, and shamrocks. But what exactly are we celebrating? According to Wikipedia, Saint Patrick's Day, or the Feast of Saint Patrick, is a cultural and religious celebration held on March 17th which is the death date of the foremost patron saint of Ireland. Historically the Lenten restrictions on eating and drinking alcohol were lifted for the day, which has encouraged the holiday's tradition of alcohol consumption.
Saint Patrick was not actually Irish (gasp!). But he is credited with helping Ireland greatly through his missionary work though. The holiday has evolved into a celebration of Irish culture with parades, special foods, music, dancing, drinking, and a whole lot of green. It is customary to wear shamrocks, green clothing, and green accessories.
There’s no big secret to avoiding a DWI on these alcohol-focused holidays, just don’t drink and drive and you won’t have to worry. A great way to avoid drunk driving is to plan ahead. Your safe driving plan may include a designated driver, public transportation, a taxi, a ridesharing service, or staying sober.
An estimated 13 million pints of Guinness will be consumed worldwide on March 17th. Since much of that will be consumed at bars and restaurants, people will need to get home after the festivities are over. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gives us a very good reminder about the importance of driving sober:
There is so much to celebrate on St. Patrick’s Day—from leaders of Irish heritage and the industry and commitment of Irish immigrants who helped build America to beautiful gifts of art and music and some of the world’s most celebrated literature. So let’s celebrate St. Patrick’s Day the right way—safely. Remember: Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving.
During the 2014-2018 St. Patrick’s Day holiday period (3/16 at 6 pm to 3/18 at 5:59 am), 249 lives were lost in drunk-driving crashes. It’s unfortunate, but St. Patrick’s Day does see a spike of drunk driving every year. So enjoy the celebrations, but do so safely. Make your own luck. Drive sober or don’t drive. And contact us at Smart Start of Louisiana if you need help monitoring your alcohol consumption.
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