It's hard to imagine a more pleasant way to enjoy a hot South Carolina summer afternoon than by drinking a few cold ones with your friends. Unfortunately, if your drinking buddies aren't your neighbors, your desire to relax could end up creating legal complications. After all, you probably feel like you need to get home for the evening, and you likely don't want to leave your vehicle somewhere else.
Driving yourself home after a few drinks may seem like the most convenient thing to do, but it can end up costing a lot of problems. If you get pulled over, you will find yourself facing driving under the influence (DUI) charges. If you cause any kind of car crash or collision, even if your vehicle is the only vehicle involved, you will likely face criminal charges under South Carolina law.
Law enforcement may be watching more closely during the warmer summer months for signs of drunk driving than at other times of the year.
The summer is the most dangerous time to be on the road
Accidents can happen at any point, but for some reason, some of the most dangerous days on the road occur in the summer. Whether it's families traveling to a vacation destination while their kids are off of school or people returning from a weekend at the beach, there are several days that are more dangerous than average during the summer.
August 2nd, believe it or not, has been one of the most dangerous days to drive in the last decade. Between 2012 and 2016, there was an average of 101 deaths each year on August 2nd in car crashes. The 4th of July, as well as July 3rd, are also days with increased risk for people on the road. Drinking and celebrating on Independence Day can quickly lead to collisions or legal charges.
Law enforcement will typically monitor roads closely on days that are more dangerous. You could wind up driving past a cop on patrol or getting swept up in a sobriety checkpoint.
Plan ahead to keep yourself and others safe
The best way to avoid criminal charges for impaired driving is to avoid a situation where you feel like getting behind the wheel after a few drinks is your best option. Choose only to drink when you are close to home or when you have a designated driver.
Make arrangements with a friend or a spouse to help if either has too much to drink. Download Uber or Lyft to your phone so that you can secure a quick ride if you find yourself feeling a little tipsy.
Of course, hindsight is 20/20, and many people make mistakes that can have criminal consequences. Anyone facing DUI charges in South Carolina may want to sit down with a criminal defense attorney to discuss potential strategies for mitigating the consequences of the charges.