BALTIMORE COUNTY, MD — With St. Patrick's Day falling on a Sunday, it's bound to be a party weekend. Baltimore County Police warned drivers Friday that the department has a specialized DUI Task Force that will be out this weekend with increased patrols for St. Patrick's Day.
"They'd much rather you drive sober than have to pull you over. If you plan to drink, plan ahead for a sober ride home," the department posted on Facebook.
A sobriety checkpoint is planned at the Key Bridge on Friday, March 15, the Maryland Transportation Authority Police said. The checkpoint will take place Friday night at the Francis Scott Key Bridge (I-695) toll plaza.
Additionally, the Maryland Transportation Authority Police will have extra officers throughout the state this St. Patrick's day weekend to deter and detect impaired drivers.
"There is no excuse for driving impaired. With the availability of public transportation and ride-share services, there really isn't a good reason to get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol," said MDTA Police Chief Colonel Jerry Jones in a news release.
During the checkpoint, the MDTA Police will hand out information about laws and consequences for driving while intoxicated or while under the influence of alcohol and drugs. Drivers caught behind the wheel while impaired will be arrested and prosecuted.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that during the 2017 St. Patrick's Day holiday weekend, 59 people were killed in crashes involving at least one driver or motorcycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher.
Lyft is offering a SoberRide service from 4 p.m. on Sunday to 4 a.m. on Monday throughout Lyft's Washington, D.C. coverage area, which includes Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William counties in Virginia, plus the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Manassas, and Manassas Park; Washington, D.C.; and all or parts of Montgomery and Prince George's counties in Maryland.
Residents 21 and older can enter the SoberRide promo code in the Lyft app to receive a $15 credit. The promo code will be posted on SoberRide.com March 17.
People anywhere around the country can use the Safer Ride app, sponsored by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, to locate taxi services in the area.