Gallatin County Law Enforcement – Increase Patrols for St. Patrick’s Day


Increased Patrols Out for St. Patrick’s Day
Don’t Test Your Luck – Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over

March 16, 2018 – Law Enforcement will be on alert in Gallatin County this St. Patrick’s Day weekend to crack down on impaired driving. The Montana Highway Patrol will also be out statewide patrolling to deter and detect drunk drivers.

In the U.S., one person dies in an alcohol-impaired vehicle crash every 50 minutes. On St. Patrick’s Day – one of the deadliest holidays on our nation’s roads – this rate only increases. During the 2012-2016 St. Patrick’s Day holiday period, 269 lives were lost in drunk-driving crashes.  

 Drunk driving isn’t just deadly, in all 50 states, it is illegal to drive with a BAC of .08 or higher. In Montana, if you are pulled over and found to be impaired, you will receive a DUI, get your license revoked, and possibly receive jail time and up to $10,000 in fines. The consequences are more severe for repeat offenders.

Your Law Enforcement is working together and wish to ask, “If you’re planning on drinking this St. Patrick’s Day, plan ahead for sober transportation.” “It’s really that simple. Designating a sober driver can save you time, money, and possibly your life or the life of someone else.”

The high-risk period starts on Thursday and goes through the holiday weekend, and local enforcement agencies will have extra patrols out on the lookout for impaired drivers during the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations to prevent injuries and fatalities on the roadways.

The public can join in on this effort by ensuring sober transportation for all friends and family members and calling 911 to report any suspected drunk drivers on the road. In all situations, wearing your seat belt continues to be the best defense against impaired driving.

Increased traffic safety patrols are funded by the Montana Department of Transportation. This and other enforcement and educational campaigns are strategies to reach Vision Zero — zero deaths and zero serious injuries on Montana roadways. For more information about Vision Zero, contact Charity Watt, Montana Department of Transportation, 406-444-3439,

We ask that you have a safe and memorable St. Patrick’s Day.

Chief Dennis Hengel, Manhattan Police Dept.

Sheriff Brian Gootkin, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office  

Chief Steve Crawford, Bozeman Police Dept.

Chief E. J. Clark Jr., Belgrade Police Dept.

Capt. Mark Wilfore, Montana Highway Patrol            

Chief Bill Dove, Bozeman/Yellowstone Airport Police                                                  

Chief Frank Parish Jr., Montana State University Police Dept.

 Chief Scott Newell, West Yellowstone Police Dept.

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