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Honolulu DUI And Traffic Law Blog

When could drivers face Hawaiian reckless driving charges?

Honolulu has some beautiful, scenic roads. It also has a lot of people who have to make it to work on time and plenty of tourists who aren't familiar with state driving laws. Both those who have lived in Hawaii for years and those who are only visiting could find themselves facing legal charges related to reckless driving after getting pulled over by law enforcement.

Understanding how Hawaii defines reckless driving and the potential penalties associated with such charges can help you avoid criminal charges, or at least develop a potentially effective defense strategy if you face reckless driving charges.

Are you too drunk to drive? Answering this question is important

If you decide to drink alcohol, it's imperative to closely monitor your intake. Doing so will go a long way in keeping you safe.

Unfortunately, the more you drink, the more difficult it becomes to make sound decisions. This can result in a variety of errors, such as getting behind the wheel in Hawaii when you should be calling for a ride.

Tips to follow if you’re pulled over for suspicion of DUI

If you have alcohol in your system, the last thing you want to see is police lights in your rearview mirror. This alone is enough to scare you straight, but the real fear is sure to set in once you pull to the side of the road.

Even if you've been drinking, it doesn't necessarily mean the officer will arrest you. Here are five important steps to take:

  • Stay in your vehicle: Once you pull over, stay in your vehicle and wait for the officer to arrive at your window. Also, keep your hands on the wheel and put your window down when the officer requests you to do so.
  • Remain polite: Forget about how the officer is treating you. It's important to remain polite at all times, even if you feel that you're being mistreated in some way.
  • You don't have to answer questions: You want to follow directions and remain respectful, but you don't want to say anything that could incriminate you. If you're not comfortable answering a particular question, ask for clarification or simply tell the officer that you don't want to speak.
  • Don't say too much: It's easy to fall into the trap of candidly telling the officer what you're up to. For example, you may say something like "I only had one drink a couple hours ago." This doesn't typically help, as the officer has heard every excuse and reason in the book. You're better off complying with basic questions, while avoiding sharing any unnecessary information.
  • Remain calm if you're put under arrest: It's not always easy to do, but fighting back will only make things worse. This can result in additional criminal charges, such as resisting arrest. At this point, the best thing you can do is remain calm, follow directions and keep quiet.

Failed a Breathalyzer test? You can challenge the results

Fighting drunk driving charges is rarely easy, but often worth the effort, especially if you have no other drunk driving convictions on your record. Of course, when you receive charges after failing a Breathalyzer test during a stop, it can feel as though you don't have any options. Thankfully, this is not entirely true.

With careful planning and patient attention to detail, it is usually possible to mount some form of defense against drunk driving charges. Even if you cannot avoid charges altogether, a strong defense may still help you reduce the charges and avoid unnecessarily harsh sentencing. No matter what you do, it is always better to build some defense than face drunk driving charges with no defense at all.

Avoid distracted driving to avoid trouble with the law

Go back in time 25 years and distracted driving wasn't nearly as big of a problem as it is today. There are many reasons for this, including the fact that technology, such as smartphones, has taken over the world.

Distracted driving is a bad idea for many reasons, including the fact that it greatly increases the risk of causing an accident. Furthermore, if a police officer sees you texting or dialing while driving, it could result in a serious penalty.

You have the power to fight a traffic ticket

As a driver, the last thing you want to see is police lights in your rearview mirror. If this happens, you know you're in trouble. As you pull to the side of the road, your legs will turn to jelly as your hands begin to sweat.

When discussing what went wrong with the officer, don't hesitate to answer their questions and provide any requested information (such as license, insurance and registration).

Do you know what to expect at a DUI checkpoint?

As you approach a DUI checkpoint, your hands may begin to sweat and your stomach could become upset. Even if you're 100 percent sober, there's something scary about coming face to face with a police officer at a checkpoint.

Knowing what to expect at a DUI checkpoint can go a long way in helping you avoid an arrest. Here are three things to consider.

    Can the passengers in my vehicle drink beer?

    Imagine you're driving with your friend to work one morning, and suddenly you hear the pop of a beverage can opening. You figure your friend is drinking a Diet Coke, but when you turn your head, you see an ice-cold can of beer in her hand. She smiles mischievously, and says, "Want a sip?"

    Your face turns red because you're not sure if what she's doing is illegal. You know that it's against the law for you to take a sip, and you want to tell her to throw the can out of the window before a police officer pulls you over. What should you do?

    The importance of fighting a second or third DUI charge in Hawaii

    In general, it is a good idea to defend yourself against pending criminal charges, regardless of your criminal background and the nature of the charges. However, for those facing second time or third time charges for similar offenses, there is the potential for much steeper consequences. This is certainly true of those in Hawaii facing a second or third driving under the influence (DUI) charge.

    While penalties are serious even for first-time offenders, they become much more steep for those accused of repeatedly violating impaired driving laws in Hawaii. Anyone worried about the potential for a second or third DUI conviction should definitely start exploring options for a criminal defense strategy.

    Distracted drivers and pedestrians face penalties in Hawaii

    The majority of states now have laws banning texting while operating a motor vehicle. Manually entering data into a mobile device, or reading a text message or other written information, distracts people from safety on the road. That distraction creates additional risk for crashes, as it increases reaction times and often results in drivers missing critical visual information near their vehicles.

    The hope behind the laws banning texting at the wheel is that people will focus on the roads and the rate of distraction-related crashes will decrease. Hawaii has taken a firm stance against distraction, banning not only cellphone use behind the wheel but also while walking across the road. Anyone charged with a cellphone use offense in Hawaii will end up paying fines.

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