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Tuesday, March 13, 2018

PennDOT, Safety Partner Urge Safe Driving, Walking Ahead of the Saint Patrick’s Day Holiday

3/13/2018---​Montoursville, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the Highway Safety Network today urged students at Lackawanna College in Towanda, to avoid the dangers of driving impaired as part of a national Saint Patrick’s Day “Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving” campaign.

At the event, Lackawanna College students and staff tested the department’s impaired driving simulator. Participants learned the consequences of driving impaired, and were reminded to designate a sober driver over the Saint Patrick’s Day holiday and throughout the year.

Tara Schane with the Highway Safety Network used vision impairment goggles to simulate what it’s like to be under the influence of alcohol, and demonstrate a standard sobriety check. Materials from the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board were also distributed.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that drinking and driving accounts for nearly one-third of vehicle fatalities in the United States. NHTSA also reports that Saint Patrick’s Day is one of the deadliest holidays on our nation’s roads.

Preliminary PennDOT data shows there were 28 alcohol related crashes on Saint Patrick’s Day last year, and increase from 26 in 2016 and 23 in 2015. Each of those crashes could have been prevented by making the choice not to drink and drive.

Motorists are reminded that it is never okay to drive impaired. Impairment begins with the first drink and walking impaired can also pose dangers for Pennsylvania residents. Designate a sober driver or use public transportation to get home safely. If you choose to walk home after drinking, designate a sober friend to walk you home.

NHTSA’s SaferRide app is also available for download at Saferride. It allows users to identify their location and call a taxi or friend to pick them up.

For regional Twitter updates, follow 511PAStateCollege. Join the conversation on social media by using #STPatricksDay or #buzzeddriving.

For more information on impaired driving visit, penndot.gov/safety or highwaysafetynetwork.org.

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