Going to a bar or a party to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day during a pandemic might not be the best idea, but drinking and driving is an even worse idea.
To help prevent the latter, the D.C. area SoberRide program will be offering free Lyft rides from 4 p.m. today to 2 a.m. tomorrow.
The free rides will be available on the Lyft app via a promo code that will be revealed on the SoberRide website at 3 p.m.
If you have already been vaccinated and want to head out for a pint or two today, there are a number of options for celebrating at Arlington’s Irish pubs. Due to capacity restrictions, however, there may be long waits or reservations required at some venues.
More from a SoberRide press release, below.
While stating unequivocally that “we’re all safer at home” this St. Patrick’s Day during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, a local nonprofit organization today announced that – as a “necessary safety net” to this week’s high-risk, high-alcohol consumption period — free safe rides will be offered to would-be drunk drivers throughout the Washington-metropolitan area on St. Patrick’s Day.
Offered by the nonprofit Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP), the 2021 St. Patrick’s Day SoberRide® program will be in operation beginning at 4:00 pm this Wednesday, March 17, 2021 (St. Patrick’s Day) and operate until 2:00 am on Thursday, March 18, 2021 as a way to keep local roads safe from impaired drivers during this traditionally high-risk holiday.
“While we’re all safer at home, we are also a public safety organization which regularly looks to mitigate risk,” said Kurt Erickson, WRAP’s President. “We therefore urge all Greater Washington area residents to respect public health restrictions this St. Patrick’s Day. However, if persons do venture out and alcohol is involved, we are all benefited from the safety net role which the region’s SoberRide program plays to remove drunk drivers from area roadways.”
During SoberRide’s hours of operation this St. Patrick’s Day, area residents age 21 and older celebrating with alcohol may download the Lyft app to their phones, then enter a SoberRide® code in the app’s “Promo” section to receive their no cost (up to $15) safe transportation home. The St. Patrick’s Day SoberRide® promo code will be posted at 3:00 pm on March 17th on www.SoberRide.com.
Nearly half of U.S. traffic fatalities during St. Patrick’s Day involve drunk drivers (42%, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2019).*
During the 2019 St. Patrick’s Day (COVID-19 prevented last year’s offering), nearly 700 (697) persons in the Washington-metropolitan area used WRAP’s SoberRide® program rather than possibly driving home impaired. The charity also offers its SoberRide® program on Cinco de Mayo, Independence Day, Halloween and the winter holidays.
SoberRide® is offered throughout Lyft’s Washington, D.C. coverage area which includes all or parts of: the District of Columbia; the Maryland counties of Montgomery and Prince George’s; and the Northern Virginia counties of Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William.
“Lyft is proud of the role ridesharing has played in reducing impaired driving across the nation. Here in the DC area, partnering with the Washington Regional Alcohol Program allows us to take our commitment to providing reliable, convenient, and responsible transportation a step further, particularly during times of the year when people are out celebrating and in need of a ride home,” said Geoff Berman, Lyft’s National Regional Manager, East.
Sponsors of WRAP’s 2021 St. Patrick’s Day SoberRide® campaign include the 395 Express Lanes, Anheuser-Busch, Brown-Forman, Constellation Brands, District of Columbia Association of Beverage Alcohol Wholesalers, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility, Giant Food, Glory Days Grill, Kendall-Jackson, Lyft, Molson Coors Beverage Company, New Belgium Brewing, Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington and the Washington Area New Automobile Dealers Association. In addition, WRAP’s 2021 Public Partner SoberRide® Sponsors include the District of Columbia Department of Transportation, Maryland Highway Safety Office/Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration and Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.
Since 1991, WRAP’s SoberRide® program has provided 80,102 free safe rides home to would-be drunk drivers in the Greater Washington area.
Founded in 1982, the nonprofit [501(c)(3)] Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP) is a coalition of diverse interests using effective education, innovative programs and targeted advocacy to end alcohol-impaired driving and underage drinking in the Washington, DC metro area. Through public education, innovative health education programs and advocacy, WRAP is credited with keeping the metro-Washington area’s alcohol-related traffic deaths historically lower than the national average.