In the city Seoul, Korea where I am from, they have routine alcohol checkpoints at various different points in the city. Basically, the cops stop everyone before permitting to pass through the alcohol checkpoints.
In San Francisco here where I live now, we don’t have checkpoints but patrol cars will pull you over on individual-basis. We have it very lucky indeed that at least we are not forced to blow into police breathalyzers at random times when we could have had one drink too much over the limit.
I think DUI laws are sound yet they can be rather harsh to those who’ve had just one drink too many.
Believe me, there’s a big difference between a guy who’s barely standing and the guy who’s a bit buzzed.
Since our DUI laws in California state that anything over BAC 0.08% is illegal, you simply need to keep it below that level before driving.
But how do we know exactly? That’s the problem because DMV has been giving you a stupid CHART that shows you how many drinks you can drink in given number of hours.
Not only is that not scientific, if that CHART is wrong, you could end up jail, pay fines, and end up with a DUI that will haunt you for the rest of your life.
I blame this partly on DMV because they don’t tell you that there’s cheap breathalyzers you can buy.
For example, all my friends who drink a lot over in Korea carry a portable breathalyzer with them at all times due to the random and too-frequent alcohol checkpoints.
Now, I am telling you, if you ever drink even 1 glass of beer and drive, you should always check your BAC before driving.
This isn’t an advice to avoid a DUI, it’s COMMON SENSE.
I wish DMV re-wrote their 50-year driving educational books to tell people that they can buy a breathalyzer for under 10 dollars.
DMV and the government makes a lot of money giving DUIs to people on holidays such as New Years, Independence Day, and your celebration could abruptly end as the worst day in your life in jail because of DMV’s failure to educate people right.
We gotta change the driving educational books, classes, because a $10 breathalyzer is certainly cheaper than thousands of dollars in DUI fees.
One more thing, if you do carry portable breathalyzer with you, at least you know the breathalyzer that cops are carrying are working correctly. Sometimes you never know, machines are prone to break or error.
Some more tips on basic rights of every driver in the U.S.:
- You must be first pulled over for a reason such as a traffic violation, meaning you have ran a red light, didn’t stop fully at a stop sign, etc…etc… Simply pulling you over because cops want to randomly do a breathalyzer test on you is ILLEGAL. I have seen this happen recently on New Year’s where my friend was pulled over without a reason.First thing you need to ask the cop, “Is there a problem Officer?”. That is what I say everytime I get pulled over, even on speeding tickets.
- Second, don’t ever self-incriminate yourself when you get pulled over. For example, if they ask you, “Do you know how fast you were going?”, you don’t want to say, “I was going 85MPH, going 20 miles over the speed limit.”
Cops are trained to make you self-incriminate yourself, a practice that’s not going to help the drivers.
Remember your rights, “you have the right to be silent”, you can always tell the cop that you don’t want to answer any of his questions because you have to right to be silent.
- Third, cops cannot legally search your car without your permission. Don’t ever let them search your car because you feel like a nice guy. Screw that, remember your rights, they cannot search your car without a good reason. Just tell the officer that you would be happy if he/she respected your privacy and private items such as sex toys, underwear and whatnot. (Better yet, hide some dirty underwear and sex toys under your back seats just in case this happens to you, LMAO.) However, know that cops can bring a dog to smell your car for drugs even if you refuse. If the dog smells drugs in your car, they can search your car. But if you have no drugs, you have nothing to worry about. For people with guns in their car, this could be a good knowledge to have just in case you left a gun in your car by accident or whatever. Whatever the case, you never know what you left in your car by accident and even your friends could have dropped something while you gave them a ride couple months ago. Just say no because it’s your right.
Whatever you do, remember your rights, you have the right to be silent and right to have privacy. Police officers must respect that and a lot of times they will use creative languages to get around it but just say “NO!”.
One more thing, cops also cannot enter your house without your permission, they need a warrant, get a “Come Back With A Warrant” doormat, that should help a lot.