According to the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency there were over 5,000 crashes in Alabama caused by impaired driving. Out of those 5,000 crashes, 260 people died. According to the Georgia Department of Transportation Crash Data Portal, there were over 1900 traffic fatalities. Out of those 1900, 694 were caused by alcohol related impairment.
The U.S. the Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, states that New Year’s Eve is the biggest night for DUIs in the United States. The chance of getting a DUI arrest is 129% higher than average.
In Alabama, according to SuperLawyers.com – getting a DUI can result in some serious consequences:
For a first-time DUI offense, the maximum penalty is one year in jail. If a driver has a BAC of .15 percent or higher, the one-year sentence is mandatory. A judge can decide if it’s appropriate to sentence a convicted driver to probation for a year instead of jail.
Driver’s License Suspension
There is also a mandatory license suspension of 90 days for a first-time offense. Some courts may allow this suspension to be stayed if the driver agrees to have an ignition interlock device (IID) placed in their car for six months at their own expense.
The fines that can be given are $600 to $2,100, plus court costs and fees. The fees and DUI penalties increase with each subsequent offense.
Keep in mind – these fees do not include any attorney’s fees, which vary widely. All in all – a DUI can cost you $10,000.00 or more.
Don’t be a statistic this New Year’s Eve! Follow these 5 Simple New Years Eve Driving Safety Tips to keep you and your loved ones safe this New Year’s Eve.
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Designate a Driver: This is common sense folks. If you plan to consume alcohol, arrange for a designated driver in advance.
Use Public Transportation or Rideshare:
Avoid Driving Under the Influence: Use public transportation, taxis, or rideshare services if you’ve been drinking. Using Uber or Lyft, regardless of potential NYE surcharges, is still a lot less than the cost of a DUI or even worse, the cost of a life.
Be Aware of Your Surroundings:
Stay Vigilant: Be alert to the behavior of other drivers, especially late at night. Watch for signs of impairment.
Stay Focused: Keep your attention on the road. Avoid distractions such as texting or adjusting the radio.
Follow Traffic Rules:
Obey Speed Limits: Stick to posted speed limits, especially in residential areas.
Use Signals: Use turn signals to indicate your intentions and follow proper lane discipline.
If you find yourself on the other side of the law, be certain to contact a law firm and speak with an experienced Alabama DUI defense attorney, like Trip Walton, for legal advice. An Alabama DUI attorney’s role is to advocate for their client in court and help mitigate the negative consequences of a DUI as much as possible.
But we promise you, it’s a lot easier to just plan ahead.
Don’t drink and drive or drive impaired – no matter what!