DUI Facts to Remember During the Holidays
The holiday season throughout the USA is one of the most festive. It can also be a food and alcohol-laden holiday, though. Parties abound, and many individuals do not realize how much alcohol they imbibe. Like the television commercials promote, “Buzzed Driving IS Drunken Driving” and can have serious consequences.
Not every DUI (Driving Under the Influence) is as serious as another. However, accidents and fatalities do occur when inebriated. Like with all laws, there are different levels of infractions. Additionally, with most DUI stops and convictions, there are various circumstances and outcomes.
Many individuals do not even realize they are too drunk to drive safely. The “Think Twice Foundation” is assisting in alleviating this problem. Since alcohol makes an individual less alert, the problem of not recognizing a possible drunker state exists. The foundation mentioned above and other programs now supply home-use breathalyzers.
How Much Alcohol Constitutes a DUI?
All states in the USA and the District of Columbia have a BAC (Blood Alcohol Concentration) factor which determines drunk driving. The usual standard is .08 percent but can vary according to state. The higher the BAC, the more serious of an offense the DUI is considered.
Offenses are also determined by aggravating and mitigating factors.
An aggravating factor leading to a higher criminal citation and possible conviction would be the times an individual was arrested and convicted of a DUI. Second and third offenses show a pattern and are taken seriously.
Mitigating factors could be if no one is injured, it is a first-offense DUI, and the individual does not have a very high BAC. Repeated offenses can lead to significant fines, loss of driving privileges, and even jail time. In addition, first-time offenders can be sentenced to community service and an ARD (Accelerated Rehabilitation Program).
Most judges can be inclined towards ARD programs for first-time offenders, although driving can be suspended, and the magistrate determines the length of time in a program.
DUI- A Common Criminal Offense
Packing the jails with first-time offenders is not what a magistrate generally seeks to accomplish. Instead, an ARD program and community service are more effective for first-time offenders.
If an alcohol problem is suspected, AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) or a rehabilitation center might be part of the judicial recommendation. Follow-up on the progress of the offender is also routine.
Attendance at all meetings and community service activities must be adhered to strictly.
A look at statistics also shows that DUI is the most common cause of motor vehicle fatalities, especially among younger drivers in PA. The offense and accident can also be so severe as to bring the crime up to the felony range with felony penalties. Felony penalties can be severe, especially if they result in disability, serious injury, or untimely death.
Reasons Why DUI Arrests Occur Frequently During Holidays
- More individuals get together for parties such as New Year’s Eve, where the merriment goes on for hours. It is easy to overindulge in these.
- There is more pressure to go to various events and more time spent on the roadways.
- Police generally step up efforts to prevent DUIs, and spot checks on roads are not uncommon in many states.
- Non-drinkers can drink during the holidays, and alcohol impacts non-drinkers more quickly. Individuals who do not eat while drinking can also become drunk easily, and the BAC is higher.
- Fatigue also slows down metabolism and can lead to a higher BAC.
Conclusion on DUI Facts to Remember
While the focus of this post is the holidays, it is imperative to realize that DUI is common all throughout the year. Of course, it is best to avoid drinking while impaired, but if an individual makes an error and does drive while drunk, assistance is within reach.
Christian J. Hoey, ESQ., of Paoli, PA has extensive experience in all manner of DUI defense. The team at Hoey Legal is also exemplary and can be of assistance immediately. Although the DUI should be avoided, legal assistance should be sought ASAP.
Hoey Legal offers a free consultation and is available through a form, two phone numbers, and an email via the website. Mobile contact is also available, and any inquiries are answered promptly. No matter what level of DUI is involved, it should never be taken lightly as it does appear on an individual’s criminal history.
Getting in touch with Christian J. Hoey, ESQ., with decades of state and federal criminal defense under his legal belt, can prevent future damages, financial losses, and emotional pain.