St. Patrick's Day is a popular holiday in America and is celebrated around the world. In fact it is estimated that 50% of Americans will celebrate St. Patrick's Day this year. How people choose to celebrate the day varies, but customarily Americans show their support on St. Patrick's Day by wearing something green or perhaps consuming a green beer. But the clothes and beer aren't the only things that are green on St. Patrick's Day. Americans are expected to spend approximately 5.3 billion dollars this year for St. Patrick's Day. In addition, it is anticipated that 13 million pints of Guinness will be consumed world-wide. That adds up to a lot of green for the restaurant and bar business.
St. Patrick's Day in America has become one of the four biggest holidays for alcohol consumption, along with New Year's Eve, Christmas Day and Independence Day. Unfortunately that means that St. Patrick's Day historically results in a serious spike in alcohol related car accidents, especially when it falls on a weekend as it does this year. These accidents result not only in an increase in injuries but also fatalities. Reportedly on St. Patrick's Day on average there is an alcohol related car accident fatality every 72 minutes. Further, that 75% of these fatal accidents involve a drunk driver that exceeds the legal limit two times over.
Noteworthy is that these injuries and fatalities are avoidable, if people celebrate the holiday in a responsible manner. If you plan on drinking alcohol this St. Patrick's Day, then be mature and responsible and plan on not driving. Also make sure you do not get into a car with someone else who has been drinking and plans on driving. It may be trite but it is true that friends should persuade friends not to drink and drive.
In today's age of Uber, Lyft, traditional cabs and mass transportation there is no credible reason to drink and drive. Don't let a selfish and irresponsible momentary lapse in judgment on your part, create a lifetime of pain and suffering for someone else who was either injured or lost a loved one as a result. As you celebrate this St. Patrick's Day, please be responsible and do not rely on the "Luck of the Irish" to protect you and others on the roadway.
Long Island Lawyer
Paul A. Lauto, Esq.