You and the Drinking Driving Laws

WHY ARE PENALTIES FOR DRINKING AND DRIVING SO STRICT?
Drinking and driving is a hazardous combination.

CONSIDER THESE FACTS: One third of the fatalities in
New York State involve impaired or intoxicated drivers and
pedestrians.

With increased Blood Alcohol Content (BAC), crash risk increases
sharply. A driver with a BAC of 0.08 is four times as likely to cause a
crash as a driver who has not been drinking, while a driver with a BAC of
0.16 is 25 times as likely to do so. Young drinking drivers are at the
highest risk of all. Drivers 20 years old or younger are almost three
times as likely to be involved in alcohol related fatal crashes than
other drivers.

HOW MUCH CAN I DRINK BEFORE IT AFFECTS MY DRIVING
ABILITY?
Any amount of drinking will begin to affect your
judgment and coordination,, and reduce your ability to judge distances,
speeds and angles. The degree of impairment depends on four basic
factors: The amount you drink.

Whether you’ve eaten before or while drinking (food slows absorption).
Your body weight.

The length of time spent drinking.

No one should consume alcohol and drive. Everyone’s safe driving
ability deteriorates after drinking. Some people, especially young
drivers, lose their driving skills even more quickly. This is why New
York State law makes it illegal for any driver or passenger to possess an
alcoholic beverage with intent to consume (commonly called the “open
container” law).

It is also illegal to purchase an alcoholic beverage if you are under
21 years old.

WHAT IS THE QUICKEST WAY TO SOBER UP? The only way to
reduce your BAC after drinking, is to wait for your body to metabolize
(eliminate) the alcohol ­ and that takes several hours. Your
body metabolizes about one drink each hour. Coffee will not sober you up.
Neither will a walk or a cold shower. They may make you feel more awake,
but you will be just as impaired, and it will be just as dangerous for
you to drive.

WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I DRINK TOO MUCH? Find someone
who has not been drinking to drive your car or give you a ride home, or
call for a taxi.

HOW CAN I AVOID RIDING WITH A DRIVER WHO’S BEEN
DRINKING?
You have a right and a responsibility to say “No!”
Think of other ways of getting home for BOTH of you. Don’t feel
embarrassed or afraid to call your home for help. Or call a friend, or a
taxi. Your life may be at stake. Your chances of being involved in a
fatal collision are many times greater if you ride with a driver who has
been drinking.

WHAT ARE THE CHANCES OF BEING CAUGHT IF I DRIVE AFTER DRINKING
ALCOHOL?
Greater than ever before. Drinking driving enforcement
and prosecution are more effective as a result of New York State’s
STOP-DWI law. The law returns drinking driving fines to counties that use
the money to operate programs for drinking driving enforcement,
prosecution, adjudication, and education. Every county in New York State
has a STOP-DWI program. This results in more police with better equipment
on the roads looking for drinking or impaired drivers, more district
attorneys prosecuting them, and more judges hearing drinking driving
cases.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO ME IF I AM STOPPED BY THE POLICE?
If you are stopped by a police officer who believes you are under the
influence of alcohol or drugs, you may be required to take a “field
sobriety test” which may include a breath-screening test for the presence
of alcohol. If you are arrested, you will be asked to take a “chemical
test” for BAC. You may also be fingerprinted. Driving While Intoxicated
(DWI) is a crime. If you are convicted, you will face a substantial fine,
a mandatory surcharge, license revocation, higher insurance premiums, and
a possible jail sentence.

WHAT IS BLOOD ALCOHOL CONTENT (BAC)? BAC (Blood
Alcohol Content) is a measure of the concentration of alcohol in a
person’s blood. It is the best predictor of the likelihood of crash
involvement.

ARE LICENSE PENALTIES THE SAME FOR ALL AGE GROUPS?
No. If you are under 21 your driver license will be revoked for one year
if you are convicted of DWI or DWAI that occurred in New York State, or
in any other state or a province of Canada. If you are found to have
refused to take a chemical test in New York State, even if you are not
convicted of DWI or DWAI, your license will be revoked for one year.

If you commit a second such offense while you are under 21, your
license will be revoked for at least one year or until you are 21,
whichever is longer.

If you enroll in the Drinking Driver Program (DDP) and receive a
conditional license, your license will remain in conditional status for
the original full period of revocation.

Your driver license or privilege of applying for a license will also
be suspended if you are found gulity of using a New York State Driver
License or Non-Driver Identification Card as proof of age to illegally
purchase alcoholic beverages.

NOTE: Motorboat and snowmobile operators under 21
years old who drink alcohol are subject to similar penalties and
sanctions against their motorboat or snowmobile operating privileges.

IS IT POSSIBLE TO “PLEA BARGAIN” TO AVOID A CONVICTION FOR
DRINKING AND DRIVING?
No, the law prohibits a plea to a
non-alcohol or drug-related violation.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN IF I REFUSE TO TAKE THE CHEMICAL
TEST?
If you refuse a chemical test for BAC (Blood Alcohol
Content), your license will be suspended at arraignment in court, and
revoked for at least six months (second offense, one year) at a
Department of Motor Vehicles hearing. You will also be subject to a civil
penalty of $300 (second offense, $750). A driver under 21 years old who
refuses to take a chemical test under the Zero Tolerance Law is subject
to a 1-year license revocation and a $300 civil penalty. The penalties
and fines for refusing to submit to a chemical test are separate from,
and in addition to, the penalties and fines for alcohol or drug-related
convictions.

WHAT ABOUT COMMERCIAL DRIVERS? Compared to other
drivers, every driver holding, a Commercial Driver License (Class A, B,
or C) is held to stricter Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) standards, and
faces tougher penalties, while operating a vehicle that requires a CDL
license. A single conviction for DWI, DWAI, or having a .04 percent or
higher BAC requires a minimum 1-year revocation of the driver’s license
(3-years, if driving a vehicle that requires hazardous materials
placards). A second conviction within the driver’s lifetime results in
permanent revocation, with a possible waiver after 10 years. A third
conviction results in a permanent revocation without any possibility of
ever getting it back. Drivers who hold a commercial license should review
the Commercial Driver’s Manual (CDL-10), available at motor vehicle
offices, for additional information about penalties that apply to
them.

WHAT IS THE “ZERO TOLERANCE” LAW? This law makes it
illegal for a driver under age 21 to have consumed any alcohol. A police
officer may temporarily detain you to request or administer a chemical
test to determine your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC). If your BAC is .02 to
.07 percent, you will be notified to appear at a DMV hearing. If the
judge’s finding supports the charge, the penalty is a 6-month license
suspension, a $125 civil penalty, and a $100 suspension termination fee.
Each additional offense will result in your license being revoked for at
least one year or until age 21, whichever is longer, plus a $125 civil
penalty, and a $100 license re-application fee.

NOTE: If your BAC is .05 percent or greater, the
police may charge you with driving while ability impaired (DWAI) or
driving while intoxicated (DWI), and may prosecute your arrest in
criminal court.

WHAT IS THE “IGNITION INTERLOCK” PROGRAM? Under some
circumstances, a court can order a driver to purchase and install an
ignition interlock device as a condition of probation that begins at the
end of an alcohol or drug-related license revocation. This device
connects to a motor vehicle ignition system and measures the alcohol
content of the operator’s breath. It prevents the vehicle from being
started until the motorist provides an appropriate sample breath. In some
counties, during the remaining period of probation, the motorist may be
eligible to hold a post-revocation conditional license. This conditional
license will be revoked if the motorist fails to comply with the terms of
probation or for conviction of any traffic offense other than illegal
parking, stopping or standing.

Go to: You and
the Drinking Driving Laws

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Comments

  1. Jordan Padgett says:

    Stfu with this nonesense. It’s absolutely ridiculously how drunk driving laws are. People are gonna die any ways if its their destiny, let fate take the wheel and stop worrying about who’s behind the wheel. Ok maybe that’s a little careless but if u are atleast under .12 bac then your fine! It’s no different than someone who had no sleep, what should they get their license taken away, fined and jailed too asshole? The justification system is fucked up, no way should u go to prison just because u were driving drunk maybe of u kill somebody but this world is already overcrowded. We need to kill of people by natural selection, in other words let nature do its work. If an innocent person is killed by a drink driver maybe it was their destiny, god doesn’t let people die without a reason EVERYTHING happens for a fucken reason. And these DUI laws are waaaaaay to strict. Get off ur fucken high horse

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