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On St. Patty's Day: Take care to avoid blue lights
It might take more than the luck of the Irish to keep drunk drivers from getting arrested on St. Patrick's Day this year.
The State Police is beefing up its patrols tomorrow night to catch people who make the mistake of getting behind the wheel after having a few too many. State Division of Liquor Enforcement officers will be out in force, too. The Rockingham County Sheriff's Office and many local police forces are joining in as well.
This only makes sense. People would expect the police to increase patrols if crime spiked in a particular neighborhood. Likewise, if drunk driving incidents increase on particular nights of the year, the police have a duty to put more officers on patrol to try to protect the public.
Despite drunk driving laws that have been toughened up in the recent past, New Hampshire still has far too many drunk drivers. As this newspaper has reported, more than 14,000 New Hampshire drivers have more than two DWI convictions. And no one pretends that the roads don't hum with more habitual drunk drivers who simply have not been caught yet.
Catching those offenders is the job of state and local law enforcement, and citizens should be glad that so many agencies are taking that job seriously.
No holiday or festive event, St. Patrick's Day and New Year's Day included, is an excuse to drink and drive. It's good to see law enforcement officials in New Hampshire making that message very clear. If you go out and celebrate tomorrow night, make sure you don't do anything that would cause you to have to trade your green duds for prison orange.
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