Nebraska DUI Lawn Mower Driver Heads to Prison

Nebraska DUI on a lawn mowerIt’s all fun and games until you end up in prison because you passed out next to your lawnmower after a drunken joyride.

Nebraska DUI law is pretty specific. If your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is over .08 percent, you are guilty of drunk driving. If you have been found guilty of more than one Nebraska DUI, then you will face harsher penalties and consequences, like a longer ignition interlock requirement, or more time in jail. If you refuse the BAC test that law enforcement requires, you will face additional penalties, too. However, when you’re not even driving a street legal vehicle, but are found next to it, unable to function, you can bet you’ll end up in prison, especially if it isn’t your first Nebraska DUI rodeo.

Unfortunately, prison will probably not effectively prevent future DUI incidents. Most people think that a harsh punishment, like incarceration, will scare a person straight. Studies show that prison and punitive consequences for crimes like DUI are only a temporary solution to a pervasive problem. When a DUI offender receives treatment for alcohol abuse or addiction, and support once they have confronted their disease, the outcome is much better. On top of that, solutions like ignition interlock devices prevent drunk driving at the very place it starts: the driver’s seat.

Ignition interlock devices prevent up to 90 percent of second or subsequent drunk driving incidents, resulting in fewer DUI lawn mower attempts.

We tend to joke about stories like a Nebraska DUI on a lawnmower, but the truth is that even on a lawnmower, drunk driving is dangerous. Making the choice to get behind the wheel after drinking is putting lives at risk all over the roads. Be smart and safe, and know that prison is one of the worst consequences you can face, but it certainly is not the absolute worst part of a drunk driving incident.

Asleep at the Wheel and Other Florida DUI Lessons

asleep at the wheel Florida DUIWhen in Florida, don’t do as the Floridians do – at least not when it comes to their impaired drivers. Find ways to help people steer clear of any Florida DUI problems, like advocating designated drivers or rideshare services when a person knows they’ll be drinking. Rally for ignition interlock devices that prevent drunk driving before it even starts… quite literally. And please don’t do what this guy did: hand officers a stash of cash instead of his driver’s license.

Here’s how you can avoid Florida DUI problems:

  • Lesson 1: Don’t drink and drive. Even just down the road, or around the corner. Find a safe way home.
  • Lesson 2: Don’t fall asleep in your driver’s seat, or behind the wheel of any vehicle.
  • Lesson 3: Please show the officer your driver’s license, registration, and any other documentation asked for.

The first is obvious. The second lesson is one that many people fall into because it seems logical to “sleep it off” behind the wheel of a car, instead of driving home while impaired by alcohol or other substances. However, in Florida and many other states, if you are in the driver’s seat (whether the keys are in the ignition or not), you are considered to be in control of the vehicle. If you are legally impaired, then you can be charged with and convicted of a DUI.

The last lesson… well, we hope that was an anomaly, and that nobody really thinks that they can get out of a traffic violation, DUI charge, or worse, by (accidentally, or not) handing an officer anything but what is being asked for. They have a job to do, and the easier you make that on them, the easier things will go for you.

Weird DUI: What NOT to Steal when Drinking and Driving

DUI stealingAggravating circumstances are what cause stricter penalties for a crime. For instance, in many states, when you are caught shoplifting items over a certain value, you could face a felony charge, even if it is your first offense. An innocent bar brawl that causes serious injury or death is another example. The same goes for drinking and driving. A first-offense DUI with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) that is well above the legal limit of .08 percent could result in a felony charge. High BAC is an aggravating circumstance for a DUI. So is any other crime that occurs during the course of your DUI. Like stealing a police car.

If you’re already in trouble for drinking and driving, please keep the other crimes to a minimum.

When you are out drinking and driving, you are a big enough risk to everyone else on the roads. You could hurt yourself or any passengers. Compounding that with additional crimes will only increase what you face in court. Besides, nobody has ever written a story about the DUI driver who stole a car in a panic and drove him or herself to freedom. It just does not work like that.

All states have aggravating and mitigating circumstances that can increase or decrease penalties for DUI, respectively. Obvious crimes, like child endangerment, high BAC, or injury to others during the DUI will result in longer ignition interlock requirements, possible jail time, and additional non-DUI charges at times. Mitigating circumstances (like your BAC wasn’t quite at the legal limit, but you were still charged) could help reduce your penalties. Stealing a police car will not help your case, but it will definitely invoke the ire and frustration of your local law enforcement, as well as the judges you face throughout your court requirement.

Tattletale DUI: Should You Call the Cops on Yourself?

Tattletale DUIYou are driving down the road, minding your own business, blasting Whitesnake or some smooth jazz and bopping along, and suddenly you realize… you’re drunk. You are not only drunk, but you are drunk and driving. You are a criminal, and you are dangerous. What do you do? Do you become one of those tattletale DUI stories? Would that help your case if you have to go to court?

First, the moment you call police and tattletale DUI yourself, you will have to go to court. Courtrooms rely on facts, not self-serving behaviors during the illegal act being defended.

Second, if you are reading this while you are drinking and driving, there’s an even bigger problem to address.

Whether or not you intended to drink and drive, you are now faced with being a danger on the roads – to others and to yourself. If those blurred lines no longer make sense, or that stoplight seemed to be a lot greener than its actual red, you need to pull over. If you feel like you are a danger on the roads, you probably have already alerted some other driver on the road who has called 911 to report your erratic or dangerous driving. Despite that, you can definitely call and be that tattletale DUI we occasionally read about. You are doing us all a favor.

If you do make that call, remember that the facts of your case will determine the consequences you face. There are no mitigating circumstances in any state for being a tattletale DUI, and you will still have the same court costs and fines, community service, ignition interlock requirement, and more (depending on your circumstances) even if you rat yourself out.

Before you get into a situation where you are in the middle of a self-proclaimed DUI, remember that all you have to do to steer clear of trouble is to have a plan for a safe ride home.

Your Bartender May Save You From a California DUI

California DUI prevention bartenderAfter a few drinks, it gets a lot easier to convince ourselves that we are okay to drive. After a few drinks, however, it is never okay to drive. It is, however, embarrassing for some to wait out an Uber, taxi, or friend for a ride home. A new California DUI law has made that decision and process easier because now you can ask your bartender or server for a ride home if you have been drinking… and they can provide it.

Technically, the California DUI law says vouchers can be handed out for free rides home to intoxicated patrons.

That means that when it comes time to head home after happy hour, you may be able to score a free ride from your bartender. Your server may be able to swing the same deal. You may never have to worry about those moments of indecision, and you shouldn’t.

California DUI law has other big changes on the horizon.

In 2019, anyone with a first-offense DUI will have an ignition interlock requirement. The law changed in 2017 and will be fully implemented next year. The success in reducing subsequent drunk driving offenses in the original, four-county all-offender ignition interlock pilot program, was a launching point for this new law. Between these new consequences for driving drunk, and the even easier ways the state allows an impaired driver to find a safe ride home, we expect California DUI numbers to drop significantly, and for good.

It is never okay to drive after drinking, and with states like California showing the rest of the country how easy it is to provide safer solutions, that message is being understood, loudly and clearly. The choice to drink and drive is still a choice, but one that is made much easier when we make it a lot easier to opt for a safe way home than face the frustration of a California DUI.

2017 Florida DUI Lessons: Get Drunk as a Possum?

florida dui possumA Florida possum was recently apprehended doing what we have come to expect from the human residents of the Sunshine State: breaking into a liquor store and getting her drunk on. With reports of Florida DUI dangers rising, it seems that the possum took matters into her own hands by staying off the roads and instead, opting for a safe space in the warm and inviting temple of tequila… indulging in the bed and breakfast of champions.

Just like our human friends, we are not judging the possum for her love of alcohol. Aside from breaking and entering, we can even give her props for doing what every Florida DUI offender has failed to do: staying off the roads when they have been drinking. Possums may not be known for their best judgment as they attempt to cross the road, but they are pretty much 100 percent off the hook for drunk driving. They know that when they have had a drink or two, they may as well just get cozy right where they are, sleep it off, and head home once they are sober enough to do so.

Well, that’s what we would like to think, at least.

Florida DUI stories have always been a fascinating look at the world of drunk driving. Possum proclivities aside, the most recent Florida DUI stories have included the woman who got a DUI on a horse and another DUI on a lawnmower story. We accept that Florida has a reputation for drunken decisions, including those made by golf stars and country music celebrities. In a state where ignition interlock devices are always an option for drunk drivers, we suggest following the example set forth by the possum, not the human headliners.

The moral of the Florida DUI stories… do not drink and drive. Not on a lawnmower, not on a horse. And if you really must drink, play possum and sleep it off before you become a different type of roadkill risk.

How DUI Feel? What to Think About the Alcohol You Drink

how does the alcohol you drink make you feel?

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“Don’t ask her on a straight tequila night,” the country song goes, claiming tequila’s power to incite feelings of heart-wrenching angst over lost love. Plenty of people believe that the type of alcohol you drink has some direct connection to the emotional response we have while under its influence. We were a little excited that with recent headlines, there may have been some science to back up those claims, especially when the way a person feels could determine their motivation for a DUI, too.

Unfortunately, science really just threw back a shot and said the type of alcohol you drink still doesn’t matter.

A recent survey discovered:

  • Liquor encouraged more “positive” emotion in respondents, including feeling more energetic, confident, and sexy.
  • Liquor made people feel physically ill.
  • At the same time, liquor made people feel more aggressive.
  • Red wine helped drinkers feel more relaxed.
  • Some red wine drinkers complained the beverage made them feel more tired.
  • Heavy drinkers seem to report more negative emotions than occasional drinkers, including aggression, but they also felt more energized.

Basically, not a lot of this makes any difference. Alcohol affects people differently based on a wide range of factors. The one effect that seems to be standard is impairment, which is why we have the standard blood alcohol concentration (BAC) testing that determines a DUI and is used in ignition interlock technology.

The alcohol you drink does seem to have one indisputable fact: when you drive after drinking you are dangerous. A DUI does not depend on the mood you are in, nor does it require a specific type of alcohol. When you drink, your mood may be affected but so is your ability to drive, whether you are energized by those tequila shots, or ready to hit the sack. Keeping the number of drinks in mind is probably a better use of your time and efforts than cataloging your (perhaps somewhat exaggerated) alcohol-emotional connection.

DUI Danger: What Does a 155 MPH Drunk Driver Look Like?

dui danger speedingWhen it comes to drunk driving, we’ve seen it all. It is safe to say that the easiest way to find and arrest a drunk driver is by observing the driving abilities of others on the road. Drunk drivers may run stop signs or stop lights, run over curbs, or dangerously drive the wrong way down a one-way street. Perhaps the biggest indicator of a drunk driver is someone who is driving much too slowly, or, someone who is well over the speed limit and a clear DUI danger on the roads.

Speeding is a contributing factor in 30 percent of all fatal crashes. Alcohol-related driving fatalities are recorded at a similar rate.

Drinking and driving is a problem across the country, and all states are doing their part to crack down on DUI danger each day. That means stricter laws, ignition interlock requirements, alcohol treatment programs and more. However, all of those efforts cannot prevent a person from driving under the influence and putting others in danger on the road. In one case, a driver claimed to not have even noticed the flashing blue lights as he cruised down the road at 155 MPH. Imagine what other tiny details he might not have been aware of as he sped his way toward certain death.

Speeding, reckless driving, and other traffic violations are often the probable cause needed for law enforcement to pull over a suspect for further investigation. From there, the DUI danger is quickly ascertained, and steps are taken to remove the driver from the roads. Unfortunately, not all DUI drivers are caught before their actions cause harm to others, including death, injury or property damage. A DUI is a problem, no matter what the speedometer registers, and we can all do our part to make the streets safer by simply having a plan for a sober ride when we are drinking.

New Plates for Rising Colorado DUI Rates?

scarlet letter plates for colorado dui driversThe word on the street is that dangerous drunk drivers are increasing the rates of Colorado DUI incidents to such an extent that law enforcement is looking into new methods to discourage DUIs. Well, the new method is actually an old one – public shaming. The Colorado State Patrol asked followers on Twitter if they would support “scarlet letter plates” for drunk drivers. In fact, many think that this solution would only exacerbate the problem of drunk drivers, rather than solving it.

A new Colorado DUI offender license plate could mean… more DUIs.

Scarlet letter plates, sometimes called “whiskey plates,” are special license plates that a few states use for DUI offenders. The idea is a public acknowledgment of a person’s drunk driving will make him or her think twice about repeating the crime. However, there are two problems with this solution. The first is that a person who thinks they are okay to drive after drinking is probably not concerned with those license plates. Bad judgement is bad judgement. In addition, special license plates do not have magical powers to stop a person from drinking and driving once they are installed on a vehicle.

Along those lines, a suspended or revoked driver’s license also does nothing to stop a person from driving. There are more penalties involved in driving illegally, but there is no actual mechanism to prevent those people from getting behind the wheel of a vehicle and driving.

The only thing that stops a person from driving under the influence is an ignition interlock device – a device which prevents a vehicle from starting if it detects alcohol on a driver’s breath. Given that a Colorado DUI offender has already made at least one bad choice where alcohol is involved, the honor system is no longer a reliable method to prevent drunk driving. Instead of pointing out the DUI offenders on the road, or hoping they do not drive with a suspended or revoked license, relying on devices like ignition interlocks seems to be the only solid plan to stop the rising Colorado DUI rates.

Weird DWI: Lawnmower Driving STILL Illegal

texas weird dwi lawnmowerOne would think that after all of these years, and all of these weird DWI headlines, that people would stop and realize that drinking and driving is dangerous and illegal. Oh, and that drinking and driving any type of vehicle is grounds for a DWI or other drunk driving charge. Even on a lawnmower. Even in Texas.

It isn’t a weird DWI if it keeps happening. What is weird is that this wasn’t even a DWI, it ended up as a public intoxication charge.

A Texas DWI charge requires two things: an intoxicated driver and a motorized vehicle. A lawnmower can be just as dangerous as a regular vehicle based solely on the idea that a person who has been drinking has pretty bad judgment. Their first mistake is thinking that it is okay to drive in that state of mind. The next mistake is assuming it is okay to drive a lawnmower because it isn’t a scary regular vehicle.

While there is not much danger of a high speed, head-on collision when driving a lawnmower while intoxicated, there are other dangers, including:

  • Flipping the lawnmower over, causing injury to the driver and potentially creating a hazard on the road.
  • If the lawnmower is actually on the road while the driver is driving it, it can be a hazard, too.
  • Lawnmowers have very large, sharp blades on them, and while that is not necessarily a driving hazard, it can be a problem for a person who is intoxicated and already making bad choices.
  • Really, the absurdity of this is a crime in itself. Don’t drink and drive ANYTHING.

Steering clear of a weird DWI or any type of drunk driving incident is pretty easy. If you know you will be drinking, have a plan for a safe ride home that does not include you driving anything. That includes lawnmowers, skateboard, and even your own two feet. You risk more than a night in jail, the frustration of court, a bruised ego, and the possibility of an ignition interlock requirement.