Unfortunately, impaired driving remains a serious problem in the United States, even though Uber has helped take at least some drunk drivers off the streets in larger cities. Far too many people believe a couple of drinks does not significantly impair their ability to drive, yet often they are very wrong about that. In fact, no matter how “fine” you think you are, having even a couple of drinks can have an effect on your ability to concentrate on the roadway and other drivers. (A “drink” is defined as either 12 ounces of 5 percent alcohol beer, five ounces of 12 percent alcohol wine, or 1 ½ ounces of 80 proof alcohol). Also, the legal ramifications of DUI charges can be very detrimental to your future, and very costly. Those who continue to drink lose their ability to objectively determine just how intoxicated they really are. One study found that for the average driver, even a couple of beers could decrease reaction time by a minimum of a tenth of a second. While this does not sound especially significant, for a driver who is whizzing down the freeway at 70 mph, that extra tenth of a second means the vehicle will travel 12 more feet prior to reacting to a hazard in the road—and that could mean an accident. Generally speaking, a 165-pound man who consumes two alcoholic drinks will experience:
- At least some loss of judgment
- A decreased ability to rapidly track a moving target
- A significantly decreased ability to multitask
After four alcoholic drinks, balance, vision, reasoning, information processing abilities and reaction times are also affected, plus it becomes more difficult to detect safety hazards in the roadways. Even one single DUI can end up costing you more than you might imagine—not to mention endangering other drivers and passengers. So, before you get behind the wheel, after telling yourself you really have not consumed enough alcohol to be a problem, consider the short and long-term ramifications of impaired driving.
Further Reading: Understanding the Death Penalty in Colorado
What Can a DUI Cost You?
If you want the best outcome possible for your drunk driving charges, it is essential that you hire an experienced Colorado DUI attorney—which will cost you. Since a skilled DUI attorney can make the difference between a conviction for DUI, and charges which are potentially dropped altogether (or lessened), you are going to pay either way, however having an attorney may help you avoid a driver’s license suspension and time spent in jail.
A DUI conviction will cost you the assessed fines (as much as $1,000), plus you may have to have an ignition interlock device installed (for eight months for a first offense) in your vehicle, which is also expensive. In fact, in the state of Colorado, an ignition interlock device can cost between $60 and $90 per month, as well as the initial installation fees. You could lose your driver’s license for a period of nine months, during which you will have to have someone drive you to and from work, assuming you do not lose your job as a result of your DUI. Without a driver’s license, you will also be unable to run the hundreds of errands most of us regularly engage in, such as taking the kids to and from school, and to extracurricular activities, buying groceries, going to church or recreational events, and visiting friends and family.
A DUI conviction can significantly raise your insurance rates—in some cases, to the point of making them simply unaffordable—or your insurance company could drop you altogether. Impaired driving is a criminal offense, which means a conviction will result in a criminal record. Since employers most all ask about any criminal convictions during your application process, in today’s tough job market, your DUI conviction could cost you a job you are otherwise well-qualified for. As if all of these legal ramifications of a DUI are not bad enough, consider the fact that you may also face significant social stigma after being convicted of DUI. It is imperative that you contact a knowledgeable Colorado DUI attorney as soon as you find yourself being charged, if you want to avoid as many of these negative repercussions of a DUI conviction as possible.
Contact Our Boulder DUI Defense Lawyers
If you or someone you love has been arrested and charged with DUI in Boulder, it is important to fight these charges aggressively to protect your future. Contact the Boulder criminal defense lawyers at Steven Louth Law Offices today for a free consultation and review of your case. Call us at (303) 422-2297 to start building a solid defense against these serious criminal charges.