Each year, right before Thanksgiving, our Erie DUI defense attorney takes time to remind Pennsylvania drivers of the risk of holiday DUI stops during the holidays. Law enforcement officers increase patrols and watch more closely for drunk drivers beginning the week of Thanksgiving and continuing through New Year’s Day. Holiday DUI arrests can increase dramatically during the holidays are people attend holiday parties and gatherings where alcohol is served.
It is important to take steps to avoid driving under the influence from Blackout Wednesday (the day before Thanksgiving) through the beginning of the New Year because law enforcement officers will be watching closely. Don’t let a holiday DUI ruin your good cheer. Follow these steps for avoiding Holiday DUI arrests to remain merry and bright throughout the rest of 2019.
Tips to Avoid Holiday DUI Arrests in Erie During the Holidays
If you are attending parties during the holidays, be aware that alcohol may be flowing freely. There are several steps you can take to ensure that you do not drive home after having too much to drink.
- Take a cab, Uber, Lyft, or other form of public transportation to the party. Arrange to share a ride home with another person to avoid being in a vehicle with an unknown driver alone after consuming alcohol.
- Choose a designated driver for your group who will remain sober and drive everyone home at the end of the evening.
- Arrange to stay overnight if the party is being held at a hotel or conference center.
- Stop drinking at least two hours before you intend to leave the party or gathering.
- Make sure you eat food at the party. It can be easy to drink more than you intend and neglect eating if there is not a formal meal served.
- If you have any doubts about your driving abilities, do NOT drive. Call a cab, a friend, or a relative for a ride.
If you are hosting a party this holiday season and intend to serve alcohol, you also need to take steps to prevent your guests from driving home intoxicated. Some steps you can take to help protect your guests include:
- Serve plenty of food and non-alcoholic beverages throughout the entire evening.
- Hire an experienced bartender for the evening to help you spot guests who have had too much to drink.
- Arrange for transportation for any guest who has had too much to drink or insist they stay overnight.
- Stop serving alcohol a couple of hours before your party ends. Serve coffee and non-alcoholic holiday beverages.
What Should You Do If You Are Stopped for DUI During the Holidays?
Try not to panic. Have your driver’s license, registration, and proof of insurance in an easy-to-reach place in your vehicle, so that you are not fumbling while looking for these items. Do not get out of your vehicle. When the officer approaches your window, place your hands on the steering wheel, and wait for instructions from the officer.
You need to provide your name and address, but you do not need to tell the officer where you have been or what you have been doing. If the officer tells you to exit the vehicle, you need to comply, but you are not required to submit to field sobriety tests. Knowing your rights before you are stopped for DUI can be helpful. Read more about your legal rights during a DUI stop and what you should do after a holiday DUI stop here.
Contact an Erie DUI Defense Attorney Immediately to Discuss Holiday DUI Arrests
Contact our office immediately after a holiday drunk driving arrest. A holiday DUI charge is serious, even if this is your first offense. It is always best to learn about your legal rights and your defense options from an experienced DUI defense lawyer in Erie before deciding how to proceed with the case.
Call The Travis Law Firm at (800) 401-2066 to schedule your free legal consultation with our Erie drunk driving defense attorney. Attorney Travis has extensive experience defending individuals against DUI charges. Put his experience and skills to work for you.