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Asatryan Law
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Representing the injured in California and Nevada

How to recognize a drunk driver

The holidays are upon us, and with all those celebrations is often a much higher rate of alcohol consumption. That means you are much more likely to encounter a driver who has had too much to drink

How can you keep yourself and your passengers safe? Here are some warning signs of an impaired driver

Slow reactions

Alcohol slows down a person's response time, so a drunk driver may not brake for a traffic signal or stop sign until the vehicle is well into the intersection. Hopefully, you are behind this driver and not in front of the vehicle, or you are at risk of a rear-end collision. Brake gradually to give the driver behind you plenty of time to slow as well. Approaching intersections, keep an eye on how fast traffic moves on the cross streets, and prepare to hit the brakes, if necessary.

Lack of coordination

It takes considerable coordination to operate a vehicle, and a drunk driver will not be fully functional. There are several potential indicators of an impaired driver:

  • Accelerating suddenly and rapidly
  • Braking suddenly
  • Crossing the center line or straddling lanes
  • Colliding with vehicles or stationary objects

Issues with vision

A person who has had a few drinks likely cannot see very well. Vision may be blurry, or the driver may even see two of everything. You may notice this driver leaning forward over the steering wheel, squinting at the road. The vehicle may also move very slowly.

Impaired judgment

It shows a lack of judgment that people get behind the wheel at all after drinking. They may also tailgate, speed or exhibit other aggressive or reckless driving behaviors. A drunk driver may also be a distracted driver, using a cellphone or looking at things inside the vehicle instead of the road. You may even see someone drinking alcohol in the vehicle.

If you spot any of these warning signs, it is not enough to choose an alternate route in hopes of avoiding a motor vehicle accident; you should call 911 and alert law enforcement.

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