Between June 25 and July 5, many Tennessee law enforcement agencies will be engaging in increased DUI enforcement surrounding Independence Day. The Tennessee Highway Safety Office provides funding for county sheriff’s departments in concert with statewide and national messaging meant to reduce serious and fatal accidents involving drunk drivers.

You may notice more sobriety checkpoints along with high-visibility saturation enforcement until July 5.

“State and local law enforcement partners will be out in full force to secure Tennessee roadways,” said one county sheriff. “We want everyone to make it home safely, so please designate a sober driver.”

4th of July festivities can turn tragic without care

Americans love celebrating Independence Day with food, family and fireworks. Unfortunately, it’s among the deadliest times of year for drunk driving crashes.

During the 2016 Fourth of July period (July 2 – July 6), 188 people were killed in crashes involving at least one driver or motorcyclist who was over the limit. That represented a 28 percent increase over the same period in 2015. Furthermore, almost half of those fatalities occurred in crashes involving at least one driver or motorcyclist with a blood alcohol content of 0.15 or higher.

Don’t ruin your holiday with a DUI. In Tennessee, the penalties for first-offense drunk driving can include:

  • Between 48 hours and almost a year in jail (minimum 7 days for 0.20 or higher)
  • 1-year license revocation
  • Fine of between $350 and $1,500
  • Ignition interlock device installed in your car at your expense
  • Court-ordered alcohol and drug treatment program
  • Required restitution to any victims
  • An estimated $4,900 in average costs including towing, bail, court costs, treatment, legal fees, high-risk insurance and license reinstatement fees

These penalties go up with each subsequent offense.

Do yourself a favor and arrange for a sober ride if you need to be out on the roads during the holiday.

Got a DUI while visiting Nashville?

If you’re from out of state and have been charged with DUI, it’s crucial to get experienced legal help right away. You can’t afford to try navigating the court system on your own. An in-state defense attorney can help you get affordable bail and work to minimize the negative consequences of a DUI charge.