Drinking and Driving

If you plan to go out to drink at a restaurant or bar, drink at friends’ homes or at parties, please use a designated driver or call a cab.  Do not consume drinks made with hard liquor.  You will not know how many shots were used to “make” a drink.  A drink is one ounce of hard liquor, one 12-ounce beer, or one 3-ounce glass of wine.If two shots are poured into your drink, you will have had two drinks, not one.  A man who weighs 180 pounds and who consumes two drinks in one hour with two shots in each glass has actually had four drinks and his blood alcohol level will be a .07, which is illegal.  You are presumed to be impaired by alcohol at a .05 to a .07.  It is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol level from .05 to .07.  If your blood alcohol level reaches .08, you are presumed to be driving under the influence of alcohol.

Before you get behind the wheel, think about the injuries or death you can cause. Call a cab or a friend to pick you up. Do not get into your car. Parents: have a written contract with your teenage drivers wherein you agree to come and pick them up, without berating them, at any time should they need a safe ride home.

Do not “sleep it off” in your car. You can be arrested and convicted of D.U.I. if your keys are in the ignition and you are in the driver’s seat. You can be convicted of D.U.I. even if you do not move the car, and even if you do not start the engine! A police officer has a right to conduct a safety check on a sleeping motorist.

If you are arrested for Driving Under the Influence and the police officer takes your driver’s license and gives you a yellow sheet titled “Express Consent, Affidavit and Notice of Revocation,” you must read this document and act within seven days of the date of your arrest. You must take that form to the Motor Vehicle Department and fill out a form to request a hearing. If you fail to do this, your driving privileges in Colorado will be automatically revoked on the eighth day, and the revocation could be for nine months or for one year, or for years, depending on your driving history and the facts of your case. When you fill out the form requesting a hearing, indicate that you want the officer to attend the hearing.

Effective July 1, 2004, the Colorado State Legislature has lowered the level of alcohol consumption as shown by an analysis of a driver’s blood or breath necessary to obtain a conviction for D.U.I., vehicular homicide, and vehicular assault from 0.10 to 0.08. The level of alcohol as shown by an analysis of a driver’s blood or breath necessary to sustain a revocation of your driver’s license under the Express Consent Statute has been lowered from 0.10 to 0.08.

Drivers who are 21 years of age or older are presumed to be under the influence of alcohol if their blood alcohol level is a .08 or higher. However, if you are under the age of 21 you are presumed to be under the influence of alcohol if your blood alcohol level is only .02! A teenage girl who weighs 120 pounds and consumes two drinks in one hour has a blood alcohol level of .05, and if she drives, she is driving under the influence of alcohol. A teenage boy who weighs 160 pounds and who consumes three drinks over a two-hour period has a blood alcohol level of .03, and if he drives, he is driving under the influence of alcohol. A teenager who is convicted in court of driving while ability impaired by alcohol or convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol will have his/her driver’s license revoked for one year and no driving privileges are possible. When your insurance company discovers that your son or daughter has been convicted of an alcohol-related offense, they will be cancelled from your insurance policies. After the one-year revocation, if your son or daughter wants to have their driving privileges reinstated, they will be required to find a high-risk insurance company to obtain insurance at a cost several times above what you were paying.  If you want to speak with a Denver, Colorado D.U.I. attorney regarding your case, call me at 720-270-2500.