The school year is winding down for many Michigan college students. Some are still lingering on extended spring breaks. Others are cramming for finals and making preparations for their summer vacations. People in both groups may also schedule time to kick back and enjoy a night out with friends. Whether you attend a sporting event or get a bite to eat and a glass of wine at a favorite local restaurant, you'll obviously want to do whatever is possible to stay safe while driving and avoid trouble with the law.
Facing driving under the influence charges is a current concern for many college students. Some have never been accused of a crime and would like to keep it that way. Others worry that one more conviction would cost them their freedom and likely cause them to lose their driver's licenses for good. Wherever you fall in between those two categories, it's always best to err on the safe side when you plan to share the roadway with others.
Tips for steering clear of DUI
Planning ahead is often key to preventing alcohol-related problems when you and your friends get together for a night on the town. Keeping the following things in mind might help:
- The most obvious means for avoiding DUI charges is to completely abstain from alcohol if you plan to drive. However, there actually have been situations where people test positive for alcohol in their bloodstreams due to cough syrup they took earlier or mouthwash they used to prepare for their dates. Still, not consuming alcohol is the easiest way to stay safe and out of trouble.
- While it might seem inconvenient to arrange alternate means of travel, calling a cab or asking a friend to drive after you drink alcohol is easier than filling up your calendar with court dates and other appointments for which you'll be responsible if arrested for drunk driving.
- Eating food while drinking alcohol helps slow the body's absorption rate. (It also helps to avoid an upset stomach.)
- If you drink and choose to drive, it would probably be best to take a nap, drink some coffee, and rest for several hours before getting behind the wheel.
- You can install a personal Breathalyzer device in your vehicle. It allows you to take a private breath test before driving after drinking alcohol. If the device detects an amount of alcohol that exceeds the legal driving limit in your system, your car won't start.
No one likes to think about getting pulled over by the police after a nice night out with friends. If an officer detects even so much as a hint of alcohol on your breath, things can quickly turn from minor to very serious. Police often ask questions if they suspect a driver consumed alcohol before getting behind the wheel. If this happens to you, know that you do not have to provide any information beyond basic identification details regarding yourself and your vehicle.
If you are arrested and charged with DUI, one of the first phone calls you'll want to make is to an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney. He or she can remain by your side and provide guidance throughout the adjudication process.