You see the car just ahead of you weaving over the yellow line, driving too slowly and stopping erratically. You suspect that the driver is drunk.
What do you do now? Thousands of people are faced with this question every year — and the majority aren’t sure how to handle it. You want to be safe, naturally, and you also want to take a responsible approach to the situation. Here’s what you should do:
- Do not attempt to overtake the vehicle or stop it yourself. That could cause an accident or lead to violence.
- Make a mental note of the color, make and model of the vehicle you suspect has an impaired driver.
- Note your location and the direction the other vehicle is traveling. Highway markers and cross streets are particularly helpful.
- If you can see the driver, get as much information as you can to pass on to law enforcement, such as the driver’s gender, age and physical description.
- Stop your vehicle as soon as you can do so safely. You should do this before you attempt to make a report so that you aren’t driving while distracted (which could also cause an accident).
- Call *477, which will put you directly in contact with the Georgia State Patrol and is designed to capture reports of suspected impaired driving.
- If you can’t recall the number in the heat of the moment, call 911. While that doesn’t get you a direct like to the Georgia State Patrol, it will get your message out.
Reporting a drunk or drugged driver isn’t like tattling, so don’t waste time feeling bad about turning them into the police. You could be saving their life — or the lives of the people they might otherwise injure.
If you fall victim to a drunk driver yourself, find out how you can hold them liable for your injuries and losses.