Everybody knows that drunk driving is illegal – the fine penalties can be costly, the stress of court hearing after court hearing can be stressful… however, along with these types of costs, drunk driving is extremely dangerous. Each year, many victims are killed in drunk driving accidents because a driver made a bad decision to get behind the wheel of a car after a night of drinking. Drinking alcohol has severe effects on your ability to react quickly and can impair your vision to the point where it is impossible to see the road clearly. Combine all the issues it can cause you on the road and you have yourself a pretty terrible accident after one wrong choice. Because of this, many victims will be able to receive compensation for their injuries stemming from these often-severe accidents.
In California, victims of these accidents only have a limited amount of time to pursue an injury claim due to the statute of limitations on these matters. In some of these accidents, a victim may actually lose their life and their family may choose to file a wrongful death claim on their behalf. This is why you should always think before you drink and drive. Here are 8 things that you should always know if you just so happen to be pulled over for drunk driving.
Always pull over properly and remain in the car. Slow down and pull off the road only when it is safe to do so as well as using your turn signal to indicate intent to the officer. Turn off your engine shortly after and use your interior light if it is dark out. Always keep your hands on the steering wheel and stay in the vehicle unless you are asked to get out. This is the method that is least likely to raise any concerns for the police officer involved.
Don’t act suspicious. If you act as if you are about to hide, destroy or dispose of something, an officer may take action against you to keep themselves safe. You will then be ordered from your vehicle and patted down as well as a possible search conducted.
Never argue. Choose your words wisely and never volunteer information. Answer all questions that the officer asks you but never “mouth off” to them. You can save any arguments for the courtroom. If you have passengers, make sure that they follow the same instruction.
Remember that every move is being observed. Police officers will usually have equipment that visually records traffic stops. Officers will be documenting every action, so do not act strangely. Furthermore, acting a certain way may give an officer reasonable suspicion to suspect that a law might have been broken. This means that they may detain you if they believe this is true and may ask you questions, such as if you have been drinking or not.
Do not specifically state how much you drank. Think before you speak, as any underestimation about how much you drank could come back on you at trial. It is best to remain silent or recall that you are not exactly sure how much you had.
Remember the BAC laws. In many states, the moment that you receive a driver’s license, you are also consenting to BAC testing. If you refuse to take this test, you could receive much harsher consequences for your actions. However, if you believe that you are extremely intoxicated, then you should probably not take the test and refusal could bring fewer consequences in the long run.
Never volunteer for roadside tests if you do not have to. In many states, you do not have to consent to certain roadside tests such as the “walk and turn” or the “one leg stand.” You can refuse to take it after you get the clearance.
Is the person who pulled you over actually an officer? If you are in doubt of this, then you should always ask to talk to a supervisor or follow said police officer to the station. Have you been pulled over for a DUI and aren’t sure where to turn? Do you want to know more about your legal rights? Then you should call The Law Office of Peter Blair today to find out more about what options you have. You can exercise your rights in any legal situation, but first, you must understand what rights you have.