Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden is sending out an old but very wise message this St. Patrick’s Day which is that “Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk.” For many people across Monmouth County, St. Patrick’s Day has become a popular night out to celebrate, but because of the number of people who drink and drive, the celebration can turn dangerous.

On St. Patrick’s Day 2009, 37 percent of the drivers and motorcyclists involved in fatal crashes had a blood alcohol content of .08 or above, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Furthermore, Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office statistics indicate that for the entire year of 2010 there were 8 alcohol related deaths on the roadways in Monmouth County alone. “If you plan to meet friends at a local establishment after work, or, are attending a St. Patrick’s Day party or parade in Monmouth County, do not drink and drive, and do not let your friends drive if they are impaired,” said Sheriff Shaun Golden.

Sheriff Golden recommends these tips for a safe St. Patrick’s Day:

  • Plan a safe way home before the festivities begin
  • Before drinking, please 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 so you get home safely
  • If you happen to see a drunk driver on the road, don’t hesitate to contact your local law enforcement agency
  • If you know someone who is about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely

“As sheriff, the safety and well being of the residents in Monmouth County are a top priority. Driving while impaired is simply not worth the risk to yourself or someone else. Designate your sober driver before the festivities begin,” said Sheriff Golden.