An obvious rule of the road is to never drink and drive. It can be a risky
or even life-threatening endeavor for yourself and others on the road,
and if you're caught, the costs and jail time alone aren't worth
it. But whether you've been drinking or not, you're always at
risk for being pulled over for roadside testing.
Police officers often use these procedures to help them to determine if
someone is driving under the influence of alcohol. If you're ever
pulled over for one of these stops, sober or not, it can be a nerve-wracking
experience. Keeping in mind the following steps will help you keep your
cool and get through a field sobriety test with ease.
1. Remember your rights.
You have the right to refuse any and all field sobriety tests that an officer
asks you to do, and you may do so without issue or consequence. However,
this is very different scenario from a breath test. This is because of
a law labeled “implied consent”. This law means that if a
driver refuses to submit to a breath test, or breathalyzer, and the officer
has reasonable suspicion about the driver, penalties could follow.
If you refuse to let an officer determine if you're inebriated or not
via the breathalyzer, you can be arrested or your driver's license
could be suspended. In some states, the fact that you refused a breathalyzer
can become evidence against you. Annoying though they may be, it may be
easier in the long run to go through with them.
2. Know What the Cops Are Looking For
Getting the edge on officers by already knowing what signs they're
looking for when pulling someone over may help you in the long run. An
officer will first decide to pull someone over on a DWI suspicion by how
they're driving. Make sure not to swerve or drive unpredictably.
If you still end up being pulled over, it's important to know what
officers are trained to look for in person. Some examples include listening
to how you speak, the smell of your breath, and your appearance. Be sure
to have all important papers in order and carry yourself in a calm and
composed manner to avoid any doubt in the officer's mind.
3. Pay Attention to the Time
There are times when drivers on the road are more likely to be pulled over
on suspicion for drunk driving. The chances of being pulled over in the
late evening go up substantially than any other time, simply because that's
when people are visiting and leaving bars. If you do have to drive late
at night, avoid erratic behavior and all distractions, such as cell phones
or MP3 players. Also important to keep in mind is your setting. Police
officers also look in populated areas after big events like weddings,
concerts, or festivals. After events like these, if you can find a way
home on a less populated route, it may lessen your chance of being pulled
If you have any additional questions about DWI check stops, contact The
Wilder Firm today.