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Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Traveling Safe this Summer
Recognizing a drunk driver is not always easy. Alcohol affects the central nervous system, impairing vision, coordination, judgment and reaction time. In an effort to make their driving appear normal, sometimes a drunk driver may overcompensate for their impaired functions and may actually appear as if they are just overly cautious drivers.
Signs that a driver may be drunk include:
- Overly wide turns
- Driving slower than the speed limit
- Driving over the center of the road or lane marker
- Drifting or moving in a straight line at a slight angle to the roadway
- Driving without headlights on at night
- Irregular braking or sudden stopping
- Delayed response to traffic signals
- Coming close to striking an object, curb, etc.
- Weaving or zigzagging across the road
- Driving on the wrong side or completely off the road
- Visually appearing to be drunk (eye fixation, face close to windshield)
- Abruptly turning away or swerving from a generally straight course
- Illegally or abruptly turning
- Signaling that is at odds with driving actions
And almost as important as knowing what not to do is knowing what to do if you spot a drunk driver.
- Try to stop the vehicle
- Disobey traffic signals or laws in an attempt to keep the driver in view
- Peruse the drunk driver too closely because they may stop suddenly
- Try to restrain the drunk driver if they stop
- Unless you are properly trained and authorized to perform that function, do not attempt to act in the capacity of any police, fire or medical person
- Attempt to help any law enforcement officer while they are apprehending a drunk driver