Millions of people annually find themselves in a situation where they have had too much to drink. The majority of them will at least contemplate whether or not it would be safe for them to drive home, but the fact is that it is never safe to drive when you are intoxicated. Even if you are only slightly buzzed, your reflexes will be stunted and you will present a danger to other motorists and yourself. It is never worth the risk to drive while you are drunk, but if you still feel tempted to, then you should closely consider the following five points before you get behind the wheel:
1. A DUI is Expensive - Even if you have never been convicted of a DUI before, you can expect to pay approximately $10,000 in legal and court mandated fees. If you do not have $10,000 to spare, then you should not drink and drive. Many people will say that it is too expensive to take a taxi home, especially if they will have to take another taxi ride in the morning to pick up their vehicle, but no taxi ride has ever cost $10,000. Be smart, and call a taxi if you do not have a designated driver. It is better to spend $50 on a long taxi ride than to pay $10,000 for your DUI.
2. Drunk Drivers Kill People - As many as 18,000 people die each year in the U.S. as a result of a drunk driver. If you choose to drive while you are intoxicated, you are literally taking the lives of everyone else on the road into your own hands. After all, your hands could slip off of the steering wheel and cause a fatal car accident. Not only is everyone else around you at risk, but you also run the risk of killing yourself. If you do not want to spend the rest of your life in jail or end up at the county morgue, then you should put your keys away when you are drunk.
3. You Could Lose Your Job - A DUI conviction can cause you to lose your job, especially if you are required to drive as a condition of your employment. Not only will you be dealing with exorbitant legal fees, but you might have to do so without being employed. This scenario could ruin your financial life and cause you to file for bankruptcy.
4. Your Insurance Rates will go Up - Most insurance companies have a clause that allows them to either raise your rates or cancel your policy if you are convicted of a DUI. If you lose your policy, then it will be extremely difficult to find a new insurance company that is willing to sign you to a new one.
5. Your Personal Relationships will Suffer - The strain of dealing with the financial and social implications of a DUI is often too much for a couple to deal with. If you have children, you will also have to deal with both their disappointment and the issue of setting a bad example.
As you can see, it is never a smart idea to drive while you are intoxicated. Even if you have successfully made your way home while drunk in the past, you should not continue to take on this risk. After all, it is much easier and cheaper to get a ride home than to ruin the next several years of your life.
Anthony Joseph is a freelance writer and researcher, and a contributing author for the Arlington DUI Lawyer, the Wilson Law Firm. The city of Arlington is located between Fairfax County and Washington D.C., and has a consistently high number of DUI arrests, as travelers drive back and forth from the nation’s capital. The D.A.’s office in Arlington requires good cause to even consider negotiating on DUI charges, and it takes a lot more than a great driving record and a clear criminal history to leverage your defense.