State and Local Campaign to Run March 15 through March 17

Governor Kathy Hochul announced increased patrols by New York State Police and local law enforcement to combat alcohol and drug-impaired and reckless driving as celebrations for St. Patrick’s Day get underway statewide. This traffic enforcement detail will run from Friday, March 15, through Sunday, March 17, 2024. This is one of several funded annually by the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee.

“As an Irish New Yorker, I want to make sure we can all celebrate St. Patrick’s Day safely and responsibly,” Governor Hochul said. “There is absolutely no excuse for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and if you are celebrating, plan ahead to get home safely.”

Along with increased DWI patrols and sobriety checkpoints, drivers can expect to see law enforcement ticketing distracted drivers who are using handheld electronic devices during this enforcement period. New York State Police will also conduct checks at retail establishments targeting underage drinking and unlawful sales to minors during the campaign.

During last year’s St. Patrick’s Day impaired driving enforcement, law enforcement statewide arrested 959 people for DWI, issued 188 tickets for distracted driving, and 21,282 tickets in total.

Drunk driving kills more than 11,600 people each year nationwide. One person dies every 45 minutes of an alcohol-related crash, an average of 32 people a day, and every one of those deaths is preventable.

Choosing to drive impaired can ruin or end your life or someone else’s. This St. Patrick’s Day, if you drink and drive, you could face jail time, the loss of your license, a higher insurance rate, and dozens of unanticipated expenses.

The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee (GTSC) and the New York State STOP-DWI Foundation’s “Have a Plan” mobile app, is available for Apple and Droid smartphones. The app enables New Yorkers to locate and call a taxi service and program a designated driver list. It also provides information on DWI laws and penalties, and a way to report a suspected impaired driver.