7 reasons a cop might think you’re driving drunk

DUI, Crime, Traffic law

A police officer only needs to have a reasonable suspicion that you’re doing something you shouldn’t be doing behind the wheel to have a lawful reason to pull you over. And while such traffic stops certainly have led to the arrest of many a motorist who is driving drunk, they’ve also resulted in a lot of sober drivers getting pulled over and subjected to sobriety tests. If any of the following habits belong to you, don’t be surprised to see flashing lights behind you on the highway.

Common DUI-related behavior

  1. Driving erratically

Erratic driving can include swerving over the middle line or onto the shoulder, as well as tailgating – all signs of drunk driving, drowsy driving, and distracted driving. Your chances of being pulled over are even worse if you’re exhibiting such behavior in the wee hours of the morning, especially on a weekend.

  1. Making improper lane changes

Crossing a solid yellow line when passing, changing lanes in an intersection, neglecting to signal when switching lanes: these are routine rules of the road that an intoxicated person can easily forget.

  1. Peeling out at stop lights

You may be zoning out at a stop light when you suddenly notice the light has turned green. An officer could assume you’re racing – or drunk, since a person’s reflexes are impacted while under the influence of alcohol. Either way, you can be stopped for hazardous driving.

  1. Speeding

Driving too fast will catch any police officer’s attention. Excessive speeding can not only land you a ticket for reckless driving, the cop may catch a whiff of alcohol, which spells almost certain DUI troubles.

  1. Driving too slowly

If you’re driving far below the speed limit, you’re putting yourself and other drivers at risk. A police officer may become suspicious of slow driving, assuming you’re trying not to draw attention to yourself and your intoxication.

  1. Drinking

If a cop sees you take a big swig of something behind the wheel, it could arouse suspicions of drinking while driving, even if it’s only a soda.

  1. Using your phone

Distracted driving has taken on new meaning with the dawn of the smartphone. Using your phone at any time while behind the wheel takes your attention away from the most important task at hand – driving. And when you aren’t fully focused on your vehicle and those around you, you might look like a drunk driver to a police officer.