On my way to a Christmas party 2 weeks ago, I was driving behind what I believed to be a drunk driver. I was carefully watching him for awhile, and very carefully keeping my distance, wanting to stay a safe distance behind him rather than anywhere in front of or next to him. The driver was so clearly drunk, he couldn't stay in his lane at all, he couldn't drive straight within the lane, he was veering every which way and it was terrifying to watch.
You know what happened?
They told me they couldn't help me. They told me that without an actual location or incident reported, there was nothing they could do. I could only continue following him, and then immediately report him should an accident occur.
Pardon me, but WTF?! So much for accident prevention. So much for keeping everyone safe on the road.
I guess it sort of makes sense. I was driving on a highway, how on earth would the police be able to find him or know exactly where he was going? By the time they got to the location from which I was reporting, we would be long gone. How would the police be able to find him or track him down without me following him closely for the next 30-60 minutes. And where was my proof? Should I have video taped his driving? And then run the risk of either getting in an accident myself or getting pulled over for using my phone?!
When I finally did get a chance to pass him clearly enough, I looked in to see an older, larger man basically slumped over in the driver's seat. Disgusting. Absolutely disgusting. I can only hope that he didn't cause an accident that night and was able to get to his destination safely.
So I did some research into what would have been the best number to call if I ever find myself in this situation again. The DUI Foundation as well as several other websites all say the same thing:
"It is important to know the kinds of signs to look for in determining an incidence of driving under the influence. If you see a driver doing any of these unordinary things, contact the proper authorities (911, local police, state sheriffs, etc.) immediately"Well great...that didn't work for me. The only other numbers I could find online to call in these instances are 1-800-28DRUNK or possibly 1-877-MADD-HELP
So in the week following my drunk driving siting, I tried calling these numbers to try and get more information. I received the following recording from 1-800-28DRUNK: "Refinance your mortgage and save. Call 1-800-939-9800" and then hangs up. Great...no help there.
Have you ever been in this situation? Do you know of a better phone number to call when reporting a drunk driver?
I wish you all a happy and safe New Year's Eve!! Please be smart if you are on the road and please try and report any driver who may appear to be under the influence!