Highway Patrol cracks down on drunk driving over St. Patrick's Day weekend

The Missouri State Highway Patrol at the Kansas City St. Patrick's Day parade 2018. (MSHP HQ/Twitter)

Missouri State Highway Patrol increased patrols ahead of St. Patrick's Day festivities, cracking down on drunk drivers.

The agency campaigned heavily on social media, warning of the perils of drunk driving and promoting the importance of having a designated driver.

According to Jefferson City Police Department, 179 people were killed and 643 seriously injured on Missouri roadways in 2016 involving at least one substance-impaired driver. Two people were killed in drunk-driving crashes in Missouri over the St. Patrick's Day holiday weekend alone.

Though St. Patrick's Day holiday weekend fatalities for 2017 are not readily available, preliminary data shows 185 people were killed and 592 were seriously injured in crashes involving at least one substance-impaired driver across the state last year.

Fifty-one of those drivers were under the age of 21, according to The website stated there have been 137 roadway fatalities nationwide as of March 12, 2018.

MSHP Troop F, along with other law enforcement agencies coordinated to patrol all of St. Patrick's Day weekend with citizen safety in mind, according to their Twitter. MSHP arrest reports reveal at least 18 people were in handcuffs under the jurisdiction of the agency over the weekend. As of midnight Saturday until about 6:15 a.m. Sunday, reports revealed 14 of those arrests were on the suspicion of the driver operating a vehicle while intoxicated.

As depicted in the infographic above, a majority of arrests made over the St. Patrick's Day weekend were made in connection with DWIs.

While the agency highlighted sober driving over the holiday weekend, the promotion of safe driving practices is an ongoing effort for MSHP.

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