Summer is here, and with the extended daylight and warm temperatures comes more opportunities to spend time with friends and family outdoors. These backyard barbecues or get-togethers on an outdoor patio can be a great time, but many times they also involve alcohol, and if you’re not careful, it can end in handcuffs.
Drunk driving peaks in Minnesota during the warm summer months for a variety of reasons. Below, we touch on some of those reasons and explain how you can protect yourself from a DUI this summer.
Preventing A Summer DUI
Here are some tips for avoiding a drunk driving charge this summer.
1. Plan Ahead – If you know you’re going to be drinking, the single best thing you can do to prevent a DUI is to plan ahead and know how you’re getting home before the time comes to leave. If you’re relying on someone else, make sure that everyone knows who is the designated driver. If nobody wants to drive, make a plan to hail an Uber or Lyft both ways. The most common excuse we hear from people who get a DUI is that they only drove because they needed to get home, they wanted their car or they couldn’t leave their car where it was. None of these excuses will hold up in court, but they can all be avoided with forethought. Make sure you know how you’re getting home before the night begins.
2. Know That Police Know – Don’t assume that as long as you focus on the road and drive the speed limit that you’ll be able to get home safely and avoid a DUI. Police know that we’re entering peak DUI season, so aside from having more enforcement on the road, they also know what signs to look for to spot an impaired driver who is trying to hide their intoxication. Even if you are driving carefully, all it takes is broken taillight or an animal crossing the road at the wrong time to cause trouble. Know that now is the time police will have extra eyes looking for drunk drivers, so make good decisions.
3. Utilize Public Transportation – We’ve already talked about Ubers and Lyfts, but the Twin Cities offers a number of other low-cost ways to get around. Take the light rail, jump on a bus or call a taxi, all of these options are so much cheaper than a DUI. A simple Google search will reveal bus routes, bus stops or the light rail schedule, so look up information about your route. If you’re not going far, consider walking or biking!
4. Lawyer Up – Finally, if the first three tips fail to prevent you from getting a DUI, make at least one smart move and lawyer up. A criminal defense attorney can help contest the charges, challenge your arrest and work to get the charge reduced or dropped. Oftentimes a DUI lawyer will pay for themselves many times over by getting the charges reduced or dropped altogether. Don’t just plead guilty and hope for leniency, fight the charges and save yourself some money by hiring an experienced professional.
If you or someone you know needs to get out of jail after a DUI or wants to talk about their legal options, call our office at (952) 224-2277 or click here to set up a free case review.