Often, those who get arrested on allegations of driving under the influence are surprised that it happened. They do know that they were drinking, so it’s not a complete shock. But they had no idea that they were actually impaired or that they were breaking the law.
The problem is that people often underestimate how drunk they are, or they simply have no idea what level of impairment they’re facing. They may have thought about whether or not they could drive at the moment, determined that they could and then gotten into the car without thinking about it again. But why is it that it’s so hard to judge just how intoxicated you are?
First off, people do attempt to decide how intoxicated they are, but they often observe the other people around them to make this judgment. They’re not necessarily just thinking about how they feel, but how that compares to everyone else.
For instance, a person who had two drinks and finds themself sitting in a quiet college classroom may suddenly feel like they are very impaired because everyone else is completely sober. That same person may have two drinks and find themselves sitting in a loud bar during a sporting event, and they may feel that they are not even buzzed since everyone around them is completely intoxicated.
Judgment goes first
Another problem to consider is just the fact that alcohol itself can take away your ability to make good judgment calls. This is why people do all sorts of things that they later regret. They don’t have the same inhibitions that they should and they make poor decisions. In short, once you become intoxicated enough that it is unsafe to drive, that can also impair your judgment to the point that you don’t realize just how unsafe it would actually be to get in the car.
Are you facing charges?
You can see how it’s possible to find yourself facing DUI charges even when you tried to be safe. If this happens to you, you need to know about your legal defense options.