Not many St. Patty's arrests, but some partied way too hard

KINGMAN - Only two of the 231 DUI arrests in Arizona on St. Patrick's Day were in Kingman, according to Sgt. Don Bischoff of the Mohave County Sheriff's Office.

Those two, however, were for extreme DUI offenses with blood alcohol levels averaging 0.22 percent, nearly three times the legal limit of 0.08.

The Western Arizona DUI Task Force and Kingman Police Department were two of several agencies in the state out in force Sunday looking for impaired drivers.

Statewide, more than 3,900 traffic stops resulted in the 231 arrests; another 150 stops that didn't result in an arrest were because a designated driver was behind the wheel, according to Bischoff.

Sixteen of the 231 arrests were for aggravated DUI charges. A DUI becomes aggravated when children under the age of 15 are in the vehicle at the time, the driver's license was previously suspended due to an alcohol-related offense or the violation is the driver's third within seven years.

According to Bischoff, every 51 minutes a person in the U.S. is killed in a drunk driving crash. The majority of them involve a driver with a blood alcohol content of about 0.15 percent.

"We continually remind drivers not to get behind the wheel if they've been drinking," he said in an email.

Mohave County Sheriff Tom Sheahan recommended the following steps to avoid drunk driving: Plan a safe way home before the festivities begin; designate a sober driver before the party begins; take advantage of "sober ride" programs in your area; or call a taxi, sober friend or family member if you've had too much to drink to legally drive a vehicle.

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