Being aware of your surroundings when you are behind the wheel is important. This includes being able to spot drivers who may be potentially intoxicated with either drugs or alcohol. Of course, you should never try to take action against an intoxicated driver on your own merit, but recognizing the signs of one can potentially save your life and those of others.
While there is no exact formula for recognizing a drunk driver, there are some very common signs. According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, some of the common signs include tailgating, swerving or driving too slow or fast.
Recognizing the signs
Consuming drugs or alcohol affects your perceptions and reaction time. This is why many of the common signs of intoxicated drivers relate to their driving style. For instance, someone driving drunk may be very close to the wheel and squinting at the road because they are having a hard time seeing. Additionally, swerving may indicate a lack of sober vision. They may also be using signals erratically and incorrectly.
The first thing to do is make sure that you stay as far away from the potentially intoxicated driver as possible. Their actions will be unpredictable and they are currently operating a 2-ton machine. If you can, try to get the license plate number of the intoxicated driver and call the police. It is also a good idea to get as much information about the car as possible, such as make, model or defects like scratched paint or cracked windows.
If you have this information, call 911, not the police non-emergency number. A drunk driver is a community emergency and the police must deal with the threat swiftly.