Wednesday, December 26, 2012

New Years in New Hampshire - Holiday Driving Safety Tips 2012

Don’t Start the 2013 New Year Off on the Wrong Foot.

In 2011 between Thanksgiving and New Year’s there were a reported 13 fatalities in New Hampshire from traffic related accidents. To date so far there were 103 lives that were lost on NH roadways. The Holiday season is definitely one of the busiest times of the year for travel and with all the hustle and bustle of the holiday season between celebrations with family friends and office parties, accidents are on the rise.

While the Holidays are a time of celebration we do need to think about our responsibilities as drivers and civilians. Take some steps before going out can save you a lot of grief later. Getting arrested and accused of NH DWI is not a memory you will want to cherish. But it can affect your life for a very long time and you will remember it for a long time to come.

So here are some tips to you should follow before venturing out to party: 

Who will be the designated driver?
•    Before drinking, designate a sober driver and give that person your keys;
•    Get the number of a local taxi
•    Call a family member to pick you up after the party
•    Use public transportation
•    Plan on staying overnight if at a friends house
•    Prevent friends from drive while impaired, take their keys and get call them a cab

 If You Are Going To Drive After Drinking

If you feel that you have had too much to drink then you should not get behind the wheel!

If you are satisfied that you have had little to drink and feel you are more than capable of driving then before you get in the car or any car you are about to drive then make sure the vehicle is properly inspected, registered and operating properly.
Here are some things to look for:

•    Check all the lights including headlights and tail lamps etc…
•    Check directional signals are working and make sure to use them
•    Inspect license plate lights
•    Take the easiest and safest way home
•    Take the back roads home - some major roadways may have a sobriety checkpoint waiting for you

Don’t get pulled over for a faulty tail light! Police will look at your ability to operate the vehicle at the same time.

What If I Get Pulled Over?

If you find yourself getting pulled over. Then do not panic. Pull over right away!

Repeat: Pull over right away as long as it is safe to do so!

Have your license and registration out and ready.  Don’t look flustered or too defensive. Do not admit to having had more than one drink
Be casual and don’t show that you are nervous. Its normal for anyone to feel anxiety when being pulled over, sober or not.

You simply don’t want to give the officers any reason to thinks that you may be impaired. You may have a smell of alcohol on you but still may be under the legal limits of intoxication. You simply want to avoid having to perform a field sobriety test that even a sober person can fail.

Last but not least - Do NOT take a field sobriety tests!

These tests are only intended to gather evidence against you! Same applies to a portable breath test on the side of the road, these devices are not reliable. Do not take any tests at the police station. They can charge you for a DWI even if you blow under the legal limit of .08 or .02 for persons under 21.

If you get arrested, be polite and simply decline any questions about your nights activities. This is none of their business and anything you say can and will be used against you!
Simply answer only basic booking questions like name, address, birthday, etc… Booking questions have nothing to do with where you were , who you were with or how much you had to drink. Decline to answer and ask to call your attorney.

It is safe to say that you are probably being video recorded from the time of your arrest until the time of your release from the station so behave and act accordingly!

Happy Holidays

Paul J. Garrity Law Offices
14 Londonderry Road
Londonderry, NH 03053
Phone: (603) 434-4106
Cell: (603) 548-5298
Fax: (603) 437-6472
Paul Garrity G+