Marin’s DUI task force will be patrolling throughout the county this St. Patrick’s Day weekend to crackdown on impaired drivers.
San Rafael Police officials will deploy specific saturation patrols on Saturday, March 16, from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. in areas of the city with high frequencies of DUI collisions or arrests.
Officers from throughout the county, including those with the California Highway Patrol, will do saturation patrols on Sunday, March 17.
Police officials, including San Rafael Police Chief Diana Bishop, are encouraging motorists to designate sober drivers as part of holiday festivities with the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign.
The Marin “Avoid the 13 Task Force” recommends the following steps to have a safe and happy St. Patrick’s Day:
- Call 911 to report drunk drivers
- Plan a safe way home before the festivities begin.
- Before drinking, designate a sober driver and leave your car keys at home.
- If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation to get home safely.
- If you know someone who is about to drive a car or ride a motorcycle while impaired, take the keys and help that person make other arrangements to get to where he or she is going safely.
“Drunk driving is dangerous, deadly and against the law – and it will not be tolerated in communities this St. Patrick’s Day,” Bishop said in a release. “Today we are giving fair warning to everyone traveling in Marin County that our law enforcement officers will be out on patrol and if you are caught driving drunk, you will be arrested.”
On average, a person is killed in a drunk-driving crash every 51 minutes in the United States, according to the San Rafael Police. The majority of those crashes involve drivers who have a .15 percent BAC or higher, almost twice legal limit of .08 percent.
More than 700 people have been killed in the nation in drunk driving crashes during St. Patrick’s Day holidays from 2006 to 2010, according to the National Traffic Safety Administration.
A grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety funds the county DUI task force.
Are you planning on celebrating St. Patrick's Day locally? Are you worried about drunk or drugged drivers this weekend? Tell us in the comments!