If you drink and drive, it’s important for you to know that you will get caught. It might not happen today, and it might not happen tomorrow, but eventually, it will happen, and when it does, it can turn your whole world upside down. The fact is, law enforcement are stepping up DUI enforcement efforts all across the country like never before, and there are a number of key things that officers look for when seeking out drunk drivers, including:
When you become intoxicated, your vision tends to blur or become slightly warped. As a result, drunk drivers are more prone to weave in and out of their lanes while on the road. This is often one of the strongest indicators for law enforcement that a driver is intoxicated.
Drinking also lowers inhibitions, and when this happens, an intoxicated driver may believe that he or she can drive above the speed limit with impunity. In some cases, this is done for the exhilaration of the act, while in others; it’s done because the driver simply isn’t paying attention to his or her speedometer.
Police also pay attention to the braking patterns of the drivers around them. Because alcohol reduces reaction time, an intoxicated driver may be more prone to hard, fast braking maneuvers, and this can be an indicator of intoxication.
4.) Disobeying Traffic Lights and Signs
Intoxicated drivers are also more likely to disobey traffic lights and signs. For example, an intoxicated driver may not be paying attention to an approaching red light, and as a result, he or she may simply go right through it. Because of this, police are often watching drivers more closely at intersections, as intersections tend to be the locations of drunk driving accidents.
5.) Equipment Infractions
Some of the lesser-known things that police look for when seeking out drunk drivers are equipment infractions. Any attorney, from a Massachusetts criminal attorney to a Nevada DUI lawyer, would agree that anything from a broken taillight to a loud car stereo could be enough cause for an officer to pull a driver over. And if the driver is intoxicated, he or she is sure to get caught.
6.) Open Containers
If you choose to drink while driving, you need to know that police are also on the lookout for drivers with open containers in their vehicles. Although law enforcement needs probable cause to search your vehicle, if you’re driving down the road and drinking from an alcoholic beverage container, you’re showing the evidence right through your window. From there, you’re sure to get pulled over. Keep in mind that not all police cars are marked as such, and not all officers are wearing uniforms, so any vehicle that pulls alongside you could be a law enforcement vehicle.
What’s the best way to avoid these potential issues? Don’t drink and drive. By making a conscious choice to abstain from drinking when you know that you have to drive, you won’t have to worry about what cops are looking for because you will not have been drinking. If you do plan to go out and drink, always have a designated driver with you who will agree to remain sober and drive you to and from your destination. If you aren’t able to find a designated driver, contact a taxi cab company for a ride or take public transportation. Essentially, there is always an alternative to drinking to driving and knowing these police triggers are enlightening but not your ticket to avoiding a DUI ticket.
Author Molly P. is an Atlanta mother of two and concerned motorist. For those faced with the unfortunate occurrence of DUI, DWI, or OUI in the Boston area, acquiring a Massachusetts criminal attorney will be a necessity. Jack Diamond offers 14 years of experience in cases involving intoxication, motor vehicle operations, blood tests, blood alcohol content, sobriety checkpoints, and field sobriety tests and an excellent knowledge of the local courts and their staff.