St Patrick's Day sparks push to prevent drunk driving

St. Patrick's Day 2015 is almost here. This is a time when Americans of Irish and non-Irish decent celebrate Irish culture. Georgia residents will be wearing green while attending parades and events. For some, the celebration will also include a drink or two. The Georgia Governor's Office of Highway Safety is urging discretion during this year's holiday.

Drunk driving is always a concern for Georgia officials. Holidays that involve alcohol consumption present concern due to the potential for drinking and driving. The Office of Highway Safety released the statistic that 40 percent of all traffic related deaths during the 2013 St Patrick's holiday weekend were due to drunk driving. In light of this statistic, Georgia officials are urging citizens to have a designated driver. The GOHS Drive Sober application can be used to find sober drivers to get party goers home safely.

Individuals found guilty of DUI could lose their licenses. A first offense may lead to the loss of a driver's license for one year. A second offense can lead to a three year suspension. A third offense may result in a five year license suspension. Mandatory alcohol treatment may also be included in the punishment. In the event of a 4th offense, the defendant's car may be confiscated.

A charge of DUI can carry serious consequences. The loss of a drivers' license can severely impair an individual's ability to work or obtain new employment. If charged with a DUI, it is important to consider having experienced legal counsel that will attempt to ensure that the prosecution proves every element of the case.

Source: The Atlanta Journal Constitution, "Drivers urged to avoid drunk driving during holiday weekend," March 14, 2015

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