Midsummer drunk driving down

  • 2006-06-26
  • By TBT staff
RIGA - Latvia's Midsummer holidays passed with a drop in the number of drink-drivers, but the revelry kept emergency services busy.
A total of eight people suffered burns from fires during the holiday, which is traditionally celebrated with drinking, dancing and eating around large bonfires in the countryside.
One man sustained burns to over 35 percent of his body after falling into a bonfire while drunk, while two other burn victims had to be flown to a hospital in Riga by helicopter.
Director of Riga's Emergency Medicine Center, Martin Sics, said the holiday had been "a very troubled time with quite a large number of injuries."
Two people were injured when they recklessly jumped into water reservoirs. One young man suffered a broken seventh cervical vertebra, which rendered him paralyzed.
Paramedics attended 11 road accidents, treating 14 people for injuries. At least one person is believed to have died in a road accident during the holiday period between June 23 and 25.
Police said they detained 208 drunk drivers across the holiday period, a large drop compared to last year's Midsummer when 500 people were caught.