Many drivers think they can avoid DUI charges by checking their taillights, obeying the speed limit and following traffic laws. However, as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration explains, there are more than 100 visual cues that police use to identify drunken motorists.
Most drivers understand the dangers of being intoxicated behind the wheel, but all it takes is one poor decision to face DUI charges. If Florida police arrested you for driving under the influence, contact Leader & Leader P.A.
Michael D. Leader is a criminal attorney in Fort Lauderdale who will evaluate your charges, explain your defense options, and fight for a positive outcome of your case. As your DUI lawyer, Mr. Leader will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Call 954-523-2020 today to schedule a free initial consultation. Until then, read on to learn four signs that police use to identify intoxicated motorists:
- Abnormal Accelerating and Braking Patterns
Alcohol affects a person’s ability to judge speed and distance. If police see you braking unexpectedly, speeding, or stopping well before or after a stop line, then they may suspect you of being intoxicated.
- Not Using Headlights or Turn Signals Correctly
Intoxicated drivers often forget to turn on their headlights at night. They may also use the wrong turn signal or no turn signal at all.
- Speeding or Tailgating
Alcohol can make a driver behave recklessly by breaking the speed limit or tailgating. Following cars too closely is never wise, but it is particularly dangerous when a driver is drunk because alcohol affects depth perception and reaction time. Although speeding is commonly alleged in traffic stops that lead to DUI arrests, the National Highway Safety Traffic Administration (NHTSA) lists driving too slow as the clue/indicator officers are trained to look for.
Alcohol’s effects on coordination and depth perception make it challenging for drunk drivers to maintain a straight trajectory. If police see you weaving between lanes, or swerving onto the shoulder and overcorrecting, they may suspect you of drunk driving. Even weaving within your own lane can result in you being stopped.
Although these four signs are common indicators that a motorist is intoxicated, this is not a complete list. Here are a few more symptoms of drunk driving from Mothers Against Drunk Driving:
- Almost hitting a curb, vehicle or another object in the road;
- Parking too far from the curb;
- Delayed response to traffic signals;
- Driving well below the speed limit;
- Making illegal turns;
- And traveling in the wrong direction.
All DUI charges are serious. Even if this is your first offense, a conviction could come with:
- A fine of $500 to $1,000 (or $1,000 to $2,000 if your blood/breath alcohol level was .15 or higher, or if there was a minor in the vehicle);
- 50 hours of community service, or $10 in additional fine for each hour of community service required;
- Up to six months in jail (or up to nine months if your blood alcohol level was .15 or higher);
- Possible order to install an ignition interlock device for up to six months;
- And driver’s license suspended for 180 days to one year;
- Probation for six months to a year at your expense (often $65 – $75/month);
- DUI School with an evaluation and follow up counseling;
- Random drug and alcohol testing at your expense;
- Restrictions on your ability to leave the county you reside in without permission from the Court or Probation;
- Court costs that general reach close to $500.00.
Furthermore, you may have other consequences related to employment and your insurance which could go up substantially for several years.
If you are facing DUI charges in Florida, contact Leader & Leader P.A. As your Fort Lauderdale DUI lawyer, Michael D. Leader will be your on-call legal representative. Call 954-523-2020 to schedule a free consultation.