The rate of DUI arrests goes up significantly during the holiday season between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. In fact, the final two weeks of the year spanning Christmas and New Year’s Eve see some of the highest fatality rates from alcohol-related accidents. With numerous parties and celebrations going on during the holidays, people certainly have opportunities to make the poor decision to get behind the wheel while intoxicated.
Police often step up DUI enforcement during the holidays, so don’t put yourself in a position where you may be arrested for DUI. Below are a few tips to follow to help avoid driving under the influence.
Don’t Drink and Drive
Although everyone knows that you should never drink and drive, many drivers will try to consume alcohol and then get behind the wheel thinking that they’re okay to drive. Some people may try to rely on consumer breathalyzers to measure their intoxication. Unfortunately, these devices have varying degrees of accuracy, so a device that says you’re under the limit may be underestimating by a few points, meaning that you are actually getting behind the wheel at an unlawful limit of intoxication.
Some people think that they can get behind the wheel after only having one or two drinks if they feel “okay” to drive. However, you can still be arrested and convicted for DUI even if you are under the legal limit of 0.08 percent, if you are still sufficiently intoxicated enough to be incapable of safely operating a motor vehicle.
If you do plan to drink during the holidays, make sure to be smart about your consumption. Pace your intake to avoid severe intoxication, and try to eat food and drink water to slow the absorption of alcohol and keep hydrated.
Read more: Employment After A DUI: Can I Lose My Job?
Consider Alternative Ways of Getting Home
If you go out drinking during the holidays (or any other time of year), try to make arrangements for getting home safely. Consider taking public transit to and from your destination (if available), or call a cab or an Uber or Lyft to take you home after a night out. If you accept a ride from a family member or friend, make sure that they are sober to drive as well.
Don’t Rely on Myths to Moderate Your Drinking
Alcohol affects each person differently. Many people rely on various “old wives’ tales” to stay sober while still enjoying alcohol, such as sticking to a “one drink per hour” rule or drinking one glass of water for each alcoholic drink consumed. While these rules will certainly help you avoid excessive intoxication or a hangover the following morning, they may not necessarily ensure that you remain sober. While some people’s bodies do process the alcohol from one beer or one glass of wine per hour, other people process alcohol more slowly, and can easily end up driving while intoxicated by trying to follow the “one drink per hour” rule.
If Bringing Your Own Vehicle, Choose a Designated Driver
If you are driving to a holiday party or dinner and want to get your vehicle home, you should choose someone to be a designated driver who will refrain from consuming alcohol during your event.
Read more: How Can a DUI Lawyer Help Me?
Stay the Night, If Possible
Finally, if feasible, you may also consider making arrangements to spend the night wherever you are (or somewhere you can easily walk to), so that you can instead drive home the following morning after you’ve sobered up.
Contact an Experienced Erie DWI Defense Attorney About Your Drunk Driving Charges in Pennsylvania
Have you been charged with a DWI or DUI offense in Pennsylvania? A drunk driving conviction could leave you with a permanent record, and it could result in your driver’s license being suspended for a very long time. That is why it is imperative that you speak with a qualified DWI defense lawyer about your case. The lawyers at Purchase, George & Murphey, P.C. represent clients charged with drunk driving, breath test refusal, and related offenses in Millcreek, Harborcreek, Fairview, Meadville, and throughout Pennsylvania. Call (814) 273-2010 or fill out our confidential online form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office located at 2525 W. 26th St., Erie, PA 16506, in addition to offices located in Meadville and North East.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.