Article by Hogan Injury
Thousands of people die each year in car accidents involving alcohol impairment. Unfortunately, these deaths occur to both the inebriated drivers and their victims. To reduce your risk of becoming a victim yourself, it’s important to learn how to spot drunk drivers and how to respond to them.
Although people sometimes make mistakes that might resemble the action of a drunk driver, they usually recover and drive normally. However, the intoxicated driver is unable to recover and continue with their pattern. In addition, you’re more likely to encounter these people after 12 midnight, especially during the weekends and on holidays.
Eight Signs of a Drunk Driver
- Slow driving. Drunk drivers sometimes slow down to avoid drawing attention or to evade detection by the police. Unlike other types of slow drivers, their speed is dangerously slow to the point where they obstruct traffic flow.
- Weaving. Poor eye-hand coordination and judgment lead to a lack of precision in their driving.
- Center line straddling. Keeping their car centered over the center line helps impaired drivers to avoid weaving.
- Wide turns. Poor spatial judgment leads to wide and sloppy turns.
- Inexplicable braking. Braking patterns that make no sense such as braking when there’s no obstacle, traffic light, or sign are common for inebriated drivers.
- Slow responses and odd positioning at traffic lights. Intoxicated drivers will be slow to respond to a light turning green. This same slow reaction time may also cause them to run red lights. They may position their car at an odd angle.
- Failure to respond to changing road conditions. For example, the drunk driver may fail to merge when a double lane transitions to a single lane.
- Driving in the wrong lane. Poor judgment can cause drunk drivers to enter interstate highways via exit ramps or go the wrong way on one-way roads.
If you spot a drunk driver on the road, don’t attempt to drive past the person because that places him or her in a position to rear-end you. Instead, slow down and increase your distance behind them. Then stop your car and call the police.