Monday, January 13, 2020


Law enforcement agencies across the nation deal with people that make the wrong decision and choose to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of a drug or alcohol. 

The legal BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) limit is currently set to 0.08, I say currently because there have been legislation presented in several states that reduces the BAC limit to 0.05. Most people know the limit, but don’t understand what exactly the number means. The number represents the amount of alcohol the human body absorbs and transports throughout the body via blood circulation at any given time.

Contrary to believe it is impossible to reach a BAC of 0.08 if someone consumes one beer and one beer only.

The BAC limit has been recognized by the state to be the limit established for the purpose of setting a limitation on a person’s ability to safety operate a motor vehicle. It is not the end all be all though, I have taken plenty of people to jail for driving under the influence that didn’t have much alcohol in their systems. Operating a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs is also illegal and will result in being arrested if found to be doing so.

When someone is under the influence of drugs or alcohol their visual and motor skills are affected, this becomes very apparent when behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. The vehicle will show signs that the driver isn’t in complete control of it, the vehicle will be swaying from lane to lane or even within one lane because the driver is constantly having to adjust its positioning to correct the sway cause by the lack of the fine motor skills required to keep a vehicle straight. 

Another symptom can be a vehicles in consistent speed, traveling in excess or well below the speed limit can be a clue in that the driver of the motor vehicle is impaired. While under the influence, the brain is constantly over analyzing the information being feed to it from the senses so this can cause a vehicle to be driving much slower or faster than the driver perceives it going.

Law Enforcement Officers are trained to detect and observe specific clues that someone is operating a motor vehicle under the influence of either drugs or alcohol. Upon observation of these clues, the vehicle in question will be stopped via proper traffic stop procedure, and an investigation will be conducted to determine whether or not the person can safely operate that motor vehicle. 

During this investigation several things will occur and will be taken note of, while speaking to the person the officer will be at the same time looking out for the odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from the person, the officer will also be looking throughout the vehicle to see if any open or recently consumed alcoholic beverages are present within the vehicle, and finally the visual appearance of the driver will be noted.

If based off that investigation the officer believes the subject is under the influence of a drug or alcohol, he/she will ask the driver to get out of the vehicle and then ask them whether or not they would like to participate in Standardized Field Sobriety Testing. 

There are three (3) Standardized Field Sobriety Test established to be accurate in determining whether someone is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Once the test are conducted, if they are found to be impaired, they are then taken to jail, and their vehicle is towed.

Driving under the influence is dangerous and someone can be hurt or even killed because of it…some people think that it is harmless, it is not and when I catch them doing it I will be promptly arresting them and explaining to them why it is so dangerous. 

This is an on-going topic of discussion that will be covered in more depth over time, but for now this is where I will be stopping. I hope none of you are driving drunk and if so…stop it before someone gets hurt or gets killed.

Driving Under the Influence…