The Naperville Police Department is participating in a statewide enforcement campaign to crack down on impaired drivers and encourage people to wear their seat belts this St. Patrick’s Day weekend.
Celebrated throughout the country, St. Patrick’s Day is one of the nation’s deadliest holidays of the year due to the number of impaired drivers on the road. If you plan on drinking or using another impairing substance, plan ahead for a sober ride home.
“This year, St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Friday, which means we expect to see more parties throughout the weekend,” said Naperville Police Sgt. Derek Zook. “If you’ve been drinking, using cannabis or any other impairing drug, make the smart choice and plan for a sober driver to get you and your friends home safely. Remember that Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving, and we’ll be out looking for impaired drivers.
“We want everyone to enjoy St. Patrick’s Day, but safe driving is everyone’s responsibility,” Sgt. Zook continued.
In addition to looking for alcohol and cannabis-impaired drivers, Naperville Police will be stepping up seat belt enforcement, particularly at night when seat belt usage rates are lowest. Speeding, distracted driving and all traffic laws will be strictly enforced.
Designating a sober driver and not letting friends drive impaired are two simple steps to help avoid a tragic crash or an arrest for driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. Here are a few additional tips and reminders:
- Remember, you can be held liable and prosecuted if someone you serve is involved in an impaired driving crash.
- Make sure all guests designate a sober driver in advance or help arrange ride-sharing with other sober drivers.
- Serve lots of food and include lots of non-alcoholic beverages at the party.
- Keep the phone numbers for local cab companies handy and take the keys away from anyone who is thinking of driving drunk.
- Designate a sober driver before the party begins and give that person your keys.
- If you do not have a designated driver, ask a sober friend for a ride home, call a cab, sober friend or family member to pick you up or just stay where you are until you are sober.
- Never let a friend leave your sight if you think they are about to drive drunk.
- Always buckle up.
Pedestrians are at risk, too. If you are walking, keep an eye out for cars. Designated drivers, stay alert for impaired walkers who may not obey street signs.
The St. Patrick’s Day enforcement campaign is funded by federal traffic safety funds from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and is administered through the Illinois Department of Transportation.