On March 17th, people throughout the country will recognize St. Patrick’s Day by celebrating their Irish heritage, eating corned beef and cabbage, wearing green, attending parades, and drinking a lot of alcohol. Since St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Friday this year, many will celebrate in the evening and well into the weekend.
Unfortunately, St. Patrick’s Day is one of the most dangerous holidays for drivers since many people decide to operate their vehicles after consuming large amounts of alcohol on this particular day. In order to prevent and thwart drunk driving, law enforcement plans to increase their patrol and establish multiple sobriety checkpoints near specific areas.
If you are planning to consume alcohol this St. Patrick's Day, our legal team advises you to avoid driving at all costs. Instead, use a ridesharing service (e.g. Uber or Lyft) or ask a friend to be a designated driver. Since police will be patrolling the area in great numbers, stay on the safe side by not driving.
However, if you get pulled over during St. Patrick’s Day weekend in Florida, it is imperative to adhere to the following steps to avoid getting arrested for a DUI:
- Be polite. Cooperate with the officer’s orders and have your license, registration, and insurance information readily available for inspection.
- Do not answer any questions which may incriminate you. If you are certain that your BAC level isn’t past the legal limit (0.08%) and the officer asks how much did you have to drink, you may reply by saying simply saying “No.” However, if you think it is passed the legal limit, you could say that you have been advised by your lawyer not to answer that question without their presence.
- Do not perform any field sobriety tests (FST). These tests are designed to gather evidence against you in order to be used in the courtroom. You have the right to decline to participate in any of these tests.
- Understand the implied consent law. You have the right to decline to perform any preliminary tests, including breath tests. However, if you are arrested for a DUI, and you refuse to take a breath, blood, or urine test at the police station, then your license will be automatically suspended.
- Write everything down. If you are arrested and charged, it is important to write everything down exactly how it happened. Court cases are won and lost based on every single detail, no matter how small they may seem.