There is nothing quite like visiting your family for Thanksgiving. Whether your family is full of dramatic tension or the holiday passes peacefully, you still may find yourself indulging in a little more alcohol than you might normally. While that is all well and good, there are hundreds of other people in the world who are doing the same thing – and this intoxication can put you and your loved ones at risk.
You should never drive after having several drinks. Whether you have had a glass or not, though, you will also want to take steps to protect yourself and your family from drivers who are not being as careful as you are.
What are Washington’s DUI Laws?
Washington state explicitly notes that drivers are not permitted to take to the road with a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or higher. Drivers who do and are caught behind the wheel or who cause a roadway accident can face increasingly severe consequences, as elaborated on by Revised Code of Washington 46.61.502.
The first time a person is caught intoxicated at the wheel, their license may be suspended or revoked. Subsequently arrests or incidents involving severe injury of another party can see the offending driver brought up on endangerment charges, resulting in jail time and significant fines.
How to Prepare for Thanksgiving Traffic
Getting ready for Thanksgiving means doing more than prepping a turkey. Drivers who want to stay ahead of dangerous drivers can:
Drivers who follow roadway laws actively protect themselves from drivers who may be intoxicated or otherwise distracted. Not only are these drivers more cautious on the road, but they also have the legal defense they need to deny culpability should they get into an accident.
Set a Schedule
Thanksgiving traffic tends to be heaviest in the early morning and late evening. To avoid the kind of traffic that might result in a DUI, it is best to schedule a driver’s departure at low-traffic times. This may mean at some point in the middle of the day or even the next morning.
While drivers can establish this departure schedule ahead of time, it is important to keep an eye out for circumstances that might change a person’s plans. Emergencies, oncoming bad weather, or even a break in the traffic may make it easier for interested parties to hit the road earlier – or even later – than they initially intended.
While drivers will want to know who’s in control of the wheel and when, flexibility is a safe driver’s best friend. If someone gets tired in the middle of a drive, or if someone drank more than they meant to at a party, offer to take the wheel, instead. While it may feel inconvenient, this deliberate care can help protect a driver and their passengers from accidents.
Protect Yourself and Your Loved Ones from DUIs
Thanksgiving can be a stressful holiday, but that does not excuse driving under the influence. Even so, you will want to drive defensively after your long day of feasting. Even if you cannot prevent a DUI accident, you can protect your passengers and yourself from harm. Defensive driving tactics also set you up for a successful legal complaint, should you wish to take an intoxicated driver to court for your losses.
A car accident attorney with Premier Law Group can help you break down your legal options, should you find yourself involved in a DUI crash. To set up a case consultation, you can call (206) 880-7518 or complete our contact form.