August 31, 2017

Driverless Cars and Driving Under the Influence

Modern society is constantly advancing – new and more sophisticated technologies are appearing on the market every single day. Driverless cars are among the most sophisticated and genuinely effective ones out there. After all, these vehicles may well represent the future and they are now legalized to be tested on US roads.

With that said, the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) is also required to pass certain regulations that will ensure the safety of passengers inside the driverless cars. The DMV, however, already missed the deadline that was set up for 2015 and will need to take into consideration a number of problems that are related to driverless cars, such as when they begin to malfunction. And what if such a vehicle is hacked by someone? Who is going to be responsible for an accident involving a driverless car? And will we need a change to our roads? Will we need to create special lanes for driverless cars as well?

Furthermore, the DMV will also need to consider one important issue. Namely, whether it is ok to be  in a driverless car if you are under the influence of alcohol? Will it be possible to convict a driver of such a car with a DUI? And would is it ok to consume alcoholic beverages while being a passenger of such a vehicle?

Right now, the law is pretty broad when it comes to criminal offenses while operating a vehicle. Even if the front seat passenger takes the wheel from the driver to avoid collision, while being impaired, he or she may well be convicted for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

There is a possibility that even turning the car on and switching it into operational mode will mean you are controlling the vehicle and so the driver will be charged with driving under the influence. However, the law does need to be improved and altered in many ways to have an actual impact on how driverless cars are operated.

Driverless cars represent the future of our society and regardless of what new laws are going to appear, it is obvious that our roads are going to become a whole lot safer for all drivers soon.

So, go ahead, and discover all the benefits of driverless cars and, who knows, perhaps you’ll drive one in the future. Just don’t forget about new legislation and the effect it can really have on driverless car owners. DUI laws may be altered over time as well.

John Bayer, ESQ
The Las Vegas DUI Specialists

August 11, 2017

DUI Checkpoints And How Police Discriminate

When it comes to driving under the influence, it is 100% apparent that you are clearly endangering your own life as well as the lives of others that are surrounding you on the road. Hence, the law enforcement authorities have managed to come up with yet another instrument, which could really prove to be helpful and actually pretty much invaluable when it comes to DUI.

While the DUI checkpoints can be extremely important, it is about where they are located. According to research studies, nearly 85% of those checkpoints in Chicago are in the locations mostly populated by minorities, despite the simple that most DUI accidents occur in mostly white populated areas.

Some of the white neighborhoods experience DUI accidents all the time – people are injured, damage is done to property and yet the law enforcement authorities rarely seem to care. However, when it comes to a more difficult neighborhood that is predominantly occupied by minorities, the police are setting up dozens of checkpoints that essentially useless, given that DUI rates there are nearly four times lower.

Out of 152 checkpoints in Chicago, 127 were set up in black and Latino areas and only six are located in predominantly white locations. Federal guidelines tell law enforcement authorities to act in line with objective criteria as well as information but, clearly, something went terribly wrong.

People who are protesting against the use of the DUI checkpoints claim that these are ineffective to begin with, and now they have even more up their sleeves. After all, of all the 270, 000 citations that were issued in the DUI checkpoints from the years 2008 to 2013, nearly 95% were minor traffic infractions that had nothing to do with the DUI problem on its own.

While DUI checkpoints can be extremely useful, there needs to be some changes. Regardless of how you may see it, discrimination should stop – the law enforcement authorities should act objectively and without resorting to such things as discrimination. If the DUI accidents are taking place around a white neighborhood, the police need to act accordingly. If a predominantly black or Latino neighborhood does not demonstrate a significant rise in DUI accidents, there is no reason to install so many checkpoints there.

There is no reason for the law enforcement authorities to not be doing their job and there is no reason for us to fight against the DUI checkpoints. We just need some small adjustments and everything will work as it should. It is all about the statistics and what we are going to do about them in order to really change it for the better. DUI checkpoints can be beneficial and effective and you probably want one or two in your neighborhood as well – for the sake of your safety, of course.

John Bayer, ESQ
The Las Vegas DUI Specialists