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Holiday DUIs in California

Posted by Lynn Gorelick | Feb 14, 2021 | 0 Comments

Romantic holidays like Valentine's Day are often celebrated with pre-dinner cocktails, a nice bottle of wine, or even some champagne to celebrate. After such a tough year, it might be nice to celebrate with a few drinks. However, if you are going to go out on Valentine's night after having a few drinks, make sure you plan ahead to get home safely. 

As the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says, show the love on Valentine's Day and plan ahead for a sober ride. However, it is always a good idea to have the contact information for an East Bay DUI lawyer in case you do end up under arrest for drinking and driving.  

Champagne and Cocktails for Valentine's Day

Will dine-in restaurants be open for Valentine's Day in Alameda County or Contra Costa County this year? At least food for pick-up will still be an option for romantic dining options. Even 2-Michelin starred Commis has meal sets available for pick-up, complete with supplemental wine pairings and cocktails to go. 

If you are going out for drinks, dining al fresco with wine, or even planning a romantic picnic, it is easy to drink more than you planned on Valentine's Day. For example, if you order wine for dinner, unless you limit yourself to one glass, you may not be able to keep an accurate count of alcohol consumed. When the waiter or your partner refills the glass, it may be hard to count the ounces consumed or even know the alcohol levels. 

A red wine can range between 12% and 15% alcohol by volume (ABV). Wine glass servings could range from 4 ounces to 6 ounces. These make it hard to estimate exactly how much alcohol you are taking in over the course of an evening. 

Getting Home After a Romantic Dinner

Going for a romantic dinner at someone's house can be even harder to control alcohol. You and your romantic interest may not be experienced sommeliers or bartenders. A wine steward is used to serving out 5 ounces of wine but your partner's wine glasses may be 8 or more ounces of wine.

For a budding “mixologist,” some fun new cocktails recipes can contain double or triple the amount of alcohol in a standard drink. Even if it doesn't taste that strong, one cocktail can be enough to put a person weighing less than 160 pounds, over the legal limit. 

If you can plan ahead, make sure you have a safe ride home after a night out. If you think you may be close to the limit, err on the side of caution and call or Lyft for a ride home. Unfortunately, many people who are not actually over the limit still end up under arrest for a DUI in California. This is why it is important to have a plan if you are ever arrested, including the name of an experienced lawyer who can help you avoid the most serious penalties for a drunk driving conviction

If You See the Flashing Lights in Your Mirror

If you see flashing police lights in your rearview mirror, don't panic. Pull over and stay calm but remember your rights. The police generally need “probable cause” to make a traffic stop but it could be something as minor as a broken taillight or failure to make a complete stop at a stop sign. 

The police may be looking for other signs of alcohol or drugs but you don't have to do anything to help their case. Don't lie because that may give the officer reason to suspect you are hiding something. If you think something you say may be incriminating, you have the right to remain silent. You can say, “I invoke my 4th, 5th, and 6th Amendment rights,” then say silent until you get a chance to talk to your lawyer. 

Alameda and Contra Costa DUI Defense

With over 37 years of experience, Lynn Gorelick understands how a DUI conviction can affect your future and how to fight to keep a conviction off your record. If you are facing a DUI, contact the local East Bay DUI defense attorney who understands that you do not have to plead guilty just because you were arrested. 

About the Author

Lynn Gorelick

Lynn Gorelick has been an attorney for over 36 years. She is the Attorney Lynn Gorelick is the Immediate Past President of the California DUI Lawyers Association and a Faculty and Sustaining member of the National College of DUI Defense. Lynn is a Specialist Member of the California DUI Lawyers Association and lectures frequently to other attorneys regarding DUI and DMV issues.


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