Millions of people have been killed out on the highways of America because people chose to drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) developed a list of the most common driving cues police officers use to predict drivers are driving under the influence. The list of over one hundred cues has been split into four categories:
- Judgement problems
- Vigilance problems
- Speed and braking problems
- Issues maintaining lane position
The study conducted by the NHTSA and law enforcement across the nation determined these cues predicted a driver is driving under the influence thirty-five percent of the time.
Driving an automobile, motorcycle or other vehicle requires drivers to constantly make decisions regarding a fluctuating environment. Alcohol impairs a driver’s ability to make safe judgments and can cause them to follow too close, or take risks they would not have otherwise taken.
Driving cues police look for include:
- Unsafe lane changes
- Illegal turns
- Jerky, sharp or fast turns
- Stopping in an inappropriate place in response to officers
- Driving in the bike lane or on the pavement
- Following too close
During the study, police referred to vigilance problems as the driver’s ability to take note of the changes in their environment. This can manifest as forgetting to turn on headlights, or failing to signal a lane change.
Common cues for vigilance issues:
- Driving without headlights on
- Failing to signal lane change or turn
- Delayed response to traffic signals
- Abruptly stopping in the lane
- Driving the wrong way on a one-way street
- Diving in opposing lanes
- Turning in front of oncoming vehicles
Speed & Braking Issues
Impaired drivers statistically experience problems with braking properly due to their impaired judgment and slowed response time. In addition to braking issues, many DUI offenders commonly experience trouble with keeping a consistent speed.
Some examples of these cues include:
- Jerky and abrupt stops
- Stopping too far from curb
- Stopping way before or after the limit line
- Varying speed rapidly with no identifiable cause
- Driving 10 MPH faster or slower than posted speed limit
Problems Sustaining Consistent Lane Position
Maintaining proper lane position is also an issue for drunk or impaired drivers. Police noted that drivers driving under the influence often weaved from one side of the line to the other. Drivers on the road with extreme impairment would cross over into the other lane lines or position their vehicle in the middle of one lane night with their right and left tires straddling either side. Drunk drivers have also been known to drift gradually from one lane to the next or even swerve abruptly right before hitting another car or object.
Examples of cues police looked for:
- Turning wide
Arrested for DUI in Lincoln?
If you were arrested for a DUI, contacting a skilled Lincoln DUI attorney is critical to your success. Our legal team is backed by over 20 years of legal experience; we have handled hundreds of DUI cases and are prepared to help you today. When you choose to be represented by Monzón, Guerra & Chipman you can rest easy knowing you’re working with an attorney and legal team who have your best interests in mind.
Give us a call to get started with your free initial consultation today.