With a few more weeks left in the holiday season of 2019, there are still plenty of parties to attend. If you aren’t careful you might end up with a charge of driving under the influence as you drive home from one of these celebrations. Criminal defense attorneys are busy right now because drinking and driving arrests go up during this season as the average number of fatalities involving alcohol-impaired drivers rises 34 percent and because of this, police double down on the streets watching for drivers under the influence.

Don’t Drink and Drive. While this is is obvious, there are plenty of drivers that think that using their own DIY breathalyzer or drinking “tricks” will allow them to drink and drive home safely. Portable breath testing devices range in varying degrees of accuracy. Although your test may reveal you are safe to drive, you could be putting yourself and others in serious danger by driving if the device is even a few percentage points off.  Also, keep in mind that you don’t need to be over the “legal limit” to be arrested for drinking and driving. Simply “being affected” by alcohol and driving is enough to be arrested. Old tricks such as drinking a glass of water per alcoholic drink may make you feel less drunk but this doesn’t mean that you aren’t too intoxicated to drive. Ultimately, if you plan on drinking even one drink, don’t drive.

Be smart about drinking. Whether you plan to drive or not, drinking smart will make all the difference. Make sure to eat plenty of food. The consumption of food delays the absorption of alcohol, which in turn causes alcohol to be absorbed over a longer period of time in a person’s body, preventing a spike in intoxication. Don’t rely on the “one drink an hour” trick either.

Make arrangements for a ride home before you even go out for the evening. Often OUI convictions happen just a mile from home.  Being close to home does not increase your chance of making it home safely. Regardless of how far you plan to drive, stay with a friend or call a cab. Get the Uber or Lyft App on your Smartphone.

The Bottom Line: No one expects you to remain completely sober. Most of us will go to a holiday party, or even to a simple dinner, and enjoy a beverage or two. This does not make us bad people. We just need to be reasonable. Unfortunately, common sense always seems to diminish when alcohol is consumed. When you RSVP to these parties, line up how you will get home as well to avoid a DUI in Cincinnati this holiday season. Remember, if you are pulled over to remain silent and call a skilled criminal defense attorney.  It’s your right.  513.260.2099