Halloween is known to be one of the deadliest days of the year. Not because of ghost or zombie costumes, but because of the number of alcohol-related deaths that occur every year. In 2015, 52 percent of all the Halloween driving fatalities were a result of a drunk driver with a BAC or .08 or higher. Data also shows that in 2013, 26 percent of pedestrian deaths on the holiday occurred because of an intoxicated driver.
Law enforcement wants to do something about it
You can expect to find and increased amount of police officers patrolling the streets and highways of Wisconsin on a night like Halloween. Wisconsin has launched a campaign called “Zero in Wisconsin” in an effort to eliminate alcohol-related deaths in the state. Part of this campaign features a mobile app, “Drive Sober.” It’s a free application that offers interactive games to help determine if an individual shouldn’t drive. If you are out partying this holiday, please be careful. Authorities will be on the lookout.
Know your party plans before you start drinking
This year, make a plan before you start drinking. Designate a driver to bring you home, spend the night with a friend, take a cab or drink limited amounts. Be careful, however. Even if you are under the legal limit, you can still be charged with an OWI, Operating While Intoxicated, if an officer suspects alcohol is impairing your ability to drive.
First offense charges
First offense charges are highly dependent on your blood alcohol content (BAC) level. You can expect up to $665 in fines, $200 license reinstatement fee and six to nine months with a suspended license. If your BAC was above .15 percent you will also need an Ignition Interlock Device, a built-in breathalyzer for your car to measure your BAC before you are allowed to start the ignition.
Lawyers can help with reducing your charges and bargaining for a better sentence, it is important to work with professionals who have experience defending OWI cases. Depending on the BAC reading, in some cases, charges can be reduced. Experienced attorneys will offer the best legal advice and help you protect your future.
So, stay safe this year and have a happy Halloween, not a scary one.