Imagine you’re driving down the road on your way home and you notice someone driving erratically in front of you. They slam on the brakes, speed up and take off, then slow down and weave within their lane. To anyone behind that car, it would be pretty obvious that the person inside was drunk driving.
But sometimes it’s not that obvious. Maybe the driver in front of you is only slightly weaving in the lane or braking excessively. There’s no beacon that appears over a vehicle with a drunk driver in it, and that’s why people have a hard time deciding whether or not to someone in to police.
A case that involved two Winnipeg women is the perfect example of why you should call a suspected drunk driver in. After driving on a highway near Winnipeg in the middle of the day, a woman noticed a man driving a pick up truck that was weaving into traffic and onto the gravel shoulder. She felt it was a drunk driver, so she began following the truck. After 10 minutes of following, she called the man into 911.
Police told her to continue to follow the man at a safe distance, and she did so. When police arrived and pulled the man over they found a 66-year-old man. He failed field sobriety tests and was charged with drunk driving shortly after.
What would have happened if the woman hadn’t made the call and alerted police to the drunk driver? The most likely scenario with someone driving that erratically is that he would have crashed; maybe into something that would have injured himself or into someone else and injured or killed another person.
Even if you’re not 100% positive you’re driving near, behind, or beside a drunk driver, even if they don’t show all of the signs you’d expect to see, calling that person into police is still a good idea. You never know who could be behind the wheel or how intoxicated they may be, and if you just watch them drive away and they crash, you’ll always wish you had picked up the phone.