DUI Awareness During the Fourth of July Season

During the Fourth of July season, many people gather with loved ones to celebrate with American traditions. This can include barbecues, pool parties, fireworks, and drinking. When celebrating on the Fourth of July, it is important not to drive under the influence. In the state of Georgia, drink and driving is a very serious offense. Drivers who break this law can be subject to certain consequences that can impact them for the rest of their lives. If you plan on drinking on the upcoming holiday, it is important to know what you could face if you choose to drive:

Consequences of a DUI

When a person is pulled over for drinking and driving, they can be charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI). This may happen if the individual was driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over the legal limit of 0.08%. For those under the age of 21, the legal limit is 0.02%. A driver’s BAC can be determined by a breathalyzer, an alcotest, or even a blood test. If you find yourself in this situation for the first time, you could face the following penalties for a DUI:

  • License suspension for up to 1 year
  • The possibility of 1 year in jail
  • A fine between $300 and $1000
  • The costs and participation in the DUI Alcohol and Drug Risk Reduction Program
  • 40 hours of community service
  • A license reinstatement fee

It is important to know that if you are convicted of a DUI for a second or subsequent time, these penalties can increase. If you are under the age of 21, penalties may range from certain fees to a license suspension. In addition to this, you may be required to participate in an alcohol treatment program.

Things to Consider if You Are Stopped

In the event that you do find yourself pulled over for a DUI on the Fourth of July, it is important to know how to handle the situation and what to do afterward. When you are stopped, it is crucial that you are respectful and polite with the officer by giving them your name, address, license, registration, and insurance proof. In addition to this, you should consider the following:

  • You have a maximum of 10 days from the arrest to make a request for a hearing with the Georgia Department of Driver’s Services to keep your license from being suspended
  • In the state of Georgia, you can be charged with a DUI even if your BAC was under the legal limit. If an officer believes that you have a substance in your system that makes you a danger on the road, they can still charge you.
  • If you refuse to take a breath test, an officer has the right to take a blood sample from you without your consent

When facing this situation, it is crucial that you request to speak with an experienced attorney to ensure that your rights are protected. 

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