LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — With St. Patrick’s Day, one of the biggest party nights of the year, falling on a Saturday, law enforcement agencies are planning on beefing up patrols and DUI checkpoints.
“St. Patrick’s Day is a popular holiday in the United States that is often associated with overindulgence in alcoholic beverages,” the Los Angeles Police Department said in a statement.
“If you’re heading out for the Irish festivities,” the statement continues, “plan ahead and remember: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving.”
Police say the department plans to deploy additional officers to various locations throughout the city to set up DUI checkpoints and “DUI saturation patrols.”
Law enforcement officials say the additional patrols and checkpoints will begin Friday night in a number of areas, including North Hollywood, Rampart and various areas in Downtown.
The California Highway Patrol as well as the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department will also increase patrols throughout the holiday weekend, as California has seen an uptick in drug-impaired accidents in recent years.
“If you take prescription drugs, particularly those with a ‘driving or operating machinery warning’ on the label, you might be impaired enough to get a DUI,” the LAPD said. “Also, marijuana use can lead to impairment, especially in combination with alcohol or other drugs, and can result in a DUI.”
Authorities recommend either designating a sober driver before partaking in any celebrations or to use alternate transportation, such as Uber, Lyft or a taxi service.