By Geoff Rushton
State Patty’s Day weekend brought yet another increase in calls for emergency medical services around State College.
Centre LifeLink EMS reported on Monday that personnel were dispatched to 95 calls between 6 p.m. Friday and 6 a.m. Sunday. That number is up from last year’s 75 total calls.
About a third of the calls were alcohol-related, “meaning that the patient had overdosed on alcohol or had suffered some other illness or injury that was related to alcohol consumption,” according to a Centre LifeLink release.
Last year, 46 of the calls received by Centre LifeLink during the Penn State student-invented drinking holiday weekend were alcohol related. In 2015, EMS responded to 49 calls, 32 of which were alcohol related.
State Patty’s Day started 10 years ago as a day for students to party when Penn State’s spring break overlapped with Saint Patrick’s Day. It has persisted over the years, even when spring break did not coincide with Saint Patrick’s Day, and crime and emergency incidents peaked in 2011.
After the university paid bars to close for the day in 2013 and 2014, the “holiday” has seen an uptick in police and EMS calls over the past three years.