Even for a first-time offense, a Colorado DUI conviction is costly and can have life-changing consequences. Moreover, driving drunk risks not only your own life but that of other drivers on the road.
Clearly, a DUI should be avoided by all means.
However, avoiding driving drunk is sometimes not as easy as it sounds. Who among us hasn’t driven home after having a few at some point?
No Drunk Driving, No Colorado DUI
The only surefire way to avoid a Colorado DUI is to avoid driving drunk in the first place. Knowing whether to submit to field sobriety testing and other tips and tricks can reduce your chances of being charged. However, the bottom line is that if you drive over the legal limit, you’ll be caught sooner or later.
The good news is, you don’t need to become a teetotaler or a hermit to avoid driving drunk. There are many ways to enjoy a night out without the risk of driving under the influence.
A number of strategies to avoid a DUI are available literally at our fingertips, via apps that help you avoid driving drunk and help you get home safely at the end of the night. Here’s a rundown of some of the best.
Planning Is Key in Colorado
The most effective way to avoid driving drunk is to have a plan in place before you head out. This way, you can enjoy your evening out without worrying about how you’ll get home at the end of the night.
That said, we understand not everything is planned in life. Some nights out are spontaneous. In cases like these, have a backup plan on hand, including the apps we cover below.
Apps to Help You Avoid Driving Drunk in Colorado
The types of apps aimed at helping users avoid driving while over the legal limit include blood alcohol concentration (BAC) estimators and portable breathalyzers. Here’s what they do…and don’t do.
BAC Estimation Apps
In Colorado and elsewhere, the legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit is 0.08%. While it’s not possible to give a definitive answer to how much alcohol you can personally consume and remain under the legal limit, a number of apps factor in a handful of variables to provide you a best-estimate of where you stand.
Popular apps of this type include Drink Tracker, Alcodroid, and ENDUI factor in data like age, sex, weight, how much you’ve eaten, and the strength of the drinks you’re consuming, into their equations.
For these apps to be effective, you must continue logging your drinks as the night goes on. This is a responsibility that sometimes goes to the wayside halfway through the night. These apps also provide only an estimate of your BAC, so it’s best to assume a wide margin of error.
Portable Breathalyzer Apps
Fortunately, breathalyzer technology is becoming cheaper and more readily available to individual users. Several apps, including Alcohoot and BACtrack, use an external portable breathalyzer that plugs into your phone.
The app will give you an estimate of your BAC, and of the approximate amount of time you’ll need to wait before your BAC is back under the legal limit. An external device that you must keep with you, helps to provide a much more reliable estimate of your BAC.
Keep in mind, though, that even breathalyzers can be inaccurate. Therefore, you’ll want to allow a margin of error with these approaches too.
Apps to Get You (And Your Car) Home Safely in Colorado
Even if you don’t intend to drive, you’ll still need to get home safely at the end of your night out. Here are some of the most popular kinds of apps to help you do that.
Ridesharing apps such as Uber and Lyft are now old standbys for getting home safely at the end of your night out.
If you haven’t already done so, download these apps now and save your credit card information and home address so that finding a ride is nothing more than as a few screen taps away when it’s time to head home for the night.
Sure, ridesharing apps are a great way to get yourself home if you’ve had a few too many. It’s great that you get home safe, but you may still be wondering what happens if you drove to your destination.
How will your car get home? Will you even be able to leave it parked where it is without getting towed? Luckily, there’s now an app to get your car home, too.
Introducing Dryver. This app allows you to hire a professional driver, who will come to you and drive you and your car home.
We all know the only way to avoid a DUI for sure is to avoid driving drunk in the first place, and now there are a number of easy ways to avoid getting behind the wheel intoxicated.
Thanks to advances in technology, downloading a few apps is now a fail-safe for both planned and impromptu adventures alike.
About the Author:
Kimberly Diego is a criminal defense attorney in Denver practicing at The Law Office of Kimberly Diego. She obtained her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and her law degree at the University of Colorado. She was named one of Super Lawyers’ “Rising Stars of 2012” and “Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Colorado” for 2012 and 2013 by The National Trial Lawyers. Both honors are limited to a small percentage of practicing attorneys in each state. She has also been recognized for her work in domestic violence cases.