Driving under the Influence (DUI) is a crime or offense of driving or operating a motor vehicle while under influence of alcohol or drugs. In this brief, you will receive the 7 top ways to avoid getting pulled over for a DUI. We believe it’s better to be safe than sorry, so check out our other article on What You Should Do If Stopped for a DUI.
01 Don’t Drink and Drive! Sometimes the best answer is also the simplest answer. If you do not want to get pulled over for a DUI, do not drink and drive – ever! It may seem like an inconvenience, small risk of getting caught, or too expensive to take a cab, but trust us, the numbers do not lie.
It is cheaper to take a cab every weekend or get a parking ticket every month, than to pay the costs associated with a DUI. To see the break down of costs, check out our article How Much Does a DUI Really Cost?
The costs of fighting a DUI charge are not the only consequences. If you were to harm or kill someone or damage property while drunk driving, there is a flood of additional consequences. Just don’t drive and drive.
02 Know your Alcohol Tolerance Everyone’s alcohol tolerance level is different. Some people become impaired after just 1 drink and others will consume 3 drinks before getting tipsy. Your BAC (blood alcohol content) is not only affected by the number of alcoholic beverages you drink. There are multiple factors that play into the way your body processes alcohol, such as your gender, age, genetics, bodyweight, rate of consumption, the percentage of alcohol by volume per drink, and the food you consumed before drinking.
Understanding your personal alcohol tolerance will help you avoid a DUI. Know and adhere to your limit if you will drive yourself or other people home. Use this tool to calculate your personal limit.
There are some apps that can help you detect how drunk you are and how much influence alcohol has on your body. They include DrinkControl, TipsyTest, Drive Sober and many more.
03 Use a Personal Alcohol Breathalyzer A personal alcohol breathalyzer can be a small expense that allows you to avoid the big expenses and severe consequences of a DUI. This device will test the concentration of alcohol in your breath. While these devices are not 100% accurate, it can give you a good ballpark of your current state and ability to drive legally. Here is a link to one of the many you can buy.
Remember that any breathalyzer device that you purchase online will be less accurate than those used by the police, so use your breathalyzer as a guide and stay well below the legal limit.
04 Appoint a Designated Driver When Going Out for Drinks Appoint a designated driver and ensure she or he is up to the task. This driver should remain sober during the entire outing. He or she should refrain from drinking and ensure everyone gets home safely. Be sure to elect a trustworthy person who will not falter to temptation and peer pressure.
One creative way to use social peer pressure to keep someone from drinking is to have them wear a sticker or sign that says “hello my name is DESIGNATED DRIVER!” This person might have a hard time getting drinks from the bartender or other onlookers. If none of your friends are saintly enough to fulfill their designated driver duties, hire a designated driver by using a taxi or shared ride service like Lyft.
05 Avoid Being a Reckless Driver Don’t text and drive! A little swerve from texting will be interpreted by police as a sign of DUI. Also, driving while fatigued is nearly as dangerous as DUI. Some of our clients have combined alcohol with a lack of sleep to end up in nasty crashes. Dozing off behind the wheel will cause swerving and other traffic violations, which can kick off a DUI investigation.
Avoid using the California motorways as your personal formula one race track – especially if you’ve had an alcoholic drink or two. Maintain a low driving speed and concentrate on the road. Even though speeding is not a typical indicator for DUI, if you are pulled over for speeding and the police smell alcohol, the rest is history.
The police are hyper aware of the days and times that people drink and drive, like holidays and after 10pm on weekend nights. They are also looking for clues that indicate drunk driving like swerving in and out of lanes, failing to use turn signals, stopping abruptly, speeding over the limit, and running red stoplights. Be extra careful and observe all the traffic signs, lights, and laws.
06 Properly Maintain Your Vehicle Things like a broken license plate light or an out of date inspection sticker give the police the reasonable suspicion they need to pull you over. Keep all maintenance on you car like headlights, brake lights, turn signals, licenses, and etc up to date.
Getting regular maintenance on brake pads, oil changes, tire tread and rotations, windshield wipers, and etc will keep your car running in top shape for you. For example, broken windshield wipers and low tire tread can lead to swerving, which will definitely get you pulled over by the police.
07 Take a Defensive Driving Course Even though your driving record is clean, and you consider yourself an expert driver, occasionally taking a defensive course will help improve your driving skills. Defensive driving courses will improve driving skills by reducing your driving risks. You will learn to anticipate dangerous driving situations (like road hazards or aggressive drivers) and make quick, safe decisions.
In conclusion, while this brief helps you avoid getting pulled over for a DUI, we always discourage drinking and driving. Ensure you are safe every time you are driving whether intoxicated or not. It’s not worth the risk to your life or the out-of-pocket expense. For more information about the cost of a DUI, see our article How Much Does a DUI Really Cost?
Sometimes we have slip-ups. At Don Hammond Law, we believe that even good people make bad mistakes, but it doesn’t need to ruin your life. If you need help getting through a DUI, contact us at Don Hammond Law. Getting a DUI charge is intimidating, especially if you don’t even know the 1st steps to take, but the situation is not hopeless. We are here to help.