On March 17 people around the world will be observing St Patrick’s Day.

For many, particularly in Ireland itself, the day will begin with mass and prayers for the Saint. Parades, feasts, parties and dancing are then likely to follow throughout the day and evening in countries right across the globe.

One More Second would like to wish everyone remembering the patron saint of Ireland a very happy St. Patrick’s Day. We would also like to take the opportunity to highlight that tragically the day has been linked with an increase in drinking and driving.

In Ireland, St Patrick’s Day surpasses New Year’s Eve for drunk driving. In America, during the 2014 St. Patrick’s Day holiday period (6 p.m. March 16 to 5:59 a.m. March 18), more than a quarter (28 per cent) of all motor vehicle crash fatalities involved drunk drivers (NHTSA).

To help you keep yourself and your loved ones safe during this year’s St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, One More Second is offering the following advice:

If you are going out to party:

  • Plan your ride before you party. Designate a sober, reliable driver or find the name of a local taxi company and store the number in your phone.
  • If you plan on drinking any alcohol, leave your car at home.
  • If you are the designated driver do not consume any amount of alcohol – your friends are relying on you to get them home safe.
  • Never let a friend drive home after drinking. If you know your friend has had a drink arrange a safe way for them to get home.
  • Never take a lift with someone you suspect has been drinking.
  • If you are the designated driver watch out for drunk pedestrians on your journey home.

If you are hosting a party:

  • Find out who the designated drivers are and offer them non-alcoholic drinks only.
  • Offer to arrange transportation for guests.
  • Have the numbers of local taxi companies to hand.
  • If you suspect any of your guests may be planning to drive after consuming alcohol consider offering to put them up for the night.