Thanksgiving is a time for fun with friends and family. Often, it is also a time for drinking. Police are aware of this, as are auto safety experts. In fact, Alabama.com published an article before Thanksgiving in which the best approach to "cracking down" on drunk drivers was debated. The article argued that while checkpoints are frequently used to fight impaired driving, roving patrols of law enforcement officers may be more effective.
While there may be disagreement over the best approach for police to take to catch impaired drivers, there is one thing that is not up for debate: more people will be driving drunk over Thanksgiving and police will be doing their best to arrest them if they drive impaired.
You don't want to be one of the motorists caught up in a holiday DUI sting, as the impact of a drunk driving arrest is going to last far beyond the festive season. There are ways to avoid Birmingham DUIs during the holidays and you should strongly consider following a few simple tips to make sure your Thanksgiving celebrations do not end with an arrest warrant.
To avoid Birmingham DUIs during Thanksgiving, you can:
- Skip the drinking altogether. Many people think they know how much they can consume without being over the limit. Most of those people are wrong. As Daily Mail explained, "most people rely on guesswork" to try to determine if they've drunk too much to drive. The Daily Mail tested several respondents to assess their blood-alcohol concentration levels. Most of the respondents thought they were fine to drive, even when over legal limits.
- Get your own breath test. If you feel you must drink before driving, there are home breath test devices and apps that you can use to test your BAC. Be aware that these are NOT necessarily reliable, and may provide inaccurate results. Your blood-alcohol concentration can also keep going up after you stop drinking. This means you could test your BAC, find you are fine to drive, and then have a blood-alcohol concentration above .08 when stopped by police. It is best not to take this chance and not to drive at all when you have consumed alcohol. Still, if you feel you must drink and you cannot find any alternative way to get home, checking your BAC will at least give you some idea of whether it might be OK to get behind the wheel. If your home test shows a BAC near or above .08, do NOT take a chance!
- Get a designated driver. This is the best approach if you are going to drink. You can ask a friend, or use a taxi, bus, or car sharing service.
If you do get arrested for impaired driving over Thanksgiving, you need to be proactive in identifying the most strategic response to charges. A defense attorney can help decide what your best course of action is based on evidence against you.