Between Thanksgiving and New Year's, we may head out to a number of parties and celebrations where a lot of alcohol is served. "Liquid courage" may have you believe that you're OK to drive after having a few drinks, but in reality, many drivers make this same gamble and lose.
The statistics are staggering. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2015, over 10,000 people lost their lives due to drunk driving and 290,000 were injured. Besides the loss of life and the hundreds of thousands of injuries, MADD reports that drunk driving costs the United States over $132 billion annually.
This holiday season, the State of New York is participating in the nationwide campaign, "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over." You can expect increased law enforcement presence on roads and highways, so your chances of being pulled over for a DWI charge will also increase.
To be charged with a DWI, your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) must generally be 0.08 percent or higher. New York State's laws have recently become tougher. Penalties have also increased for being charged with a DWI if children are in the vehicle.
When you're drinking, it's important to know the way your body metabolizes alcohol--it depends on your gender and weight. To sober up properly, a cold shower, strong coffee, or exercise will not be able to help--only time.
But, if you can't sober up in time, and you have to get to another destination or get back home, please remember that you have some safer options:
- Have someone in your group be the designated driver.
- Use ride sharing apps like Uber or Lyft.
- Stay the night at a friend's house or at a hotel.
- Take a cab or public transportation.
During periods of increased enforcement, mistakes can easily be made. If you find yourself facing DWI or other criminal charges in the near future, please contact an experienced criminal defense attorney right away.
Have a safe and happy New Year's Eve!