Volunteers Get Intoxicated, Show Dangers Of Driving Drunk

By: Jennifer Bocchieri Email
By: Jennifer Bocchieri Email

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Police are trying to get out the message to those who might plan on driving drunk this New Year's Eve. Using a special demonstration, they show just how fast one can hit the legal limit for getting behind the wheel.

At 9 a.m., volunteers started throwing them back. Starting on empty, they drank all day from well-stocked coolers.

The goal is to see how drunk they get and just how fast. And the point they prove is that it doesn't take long.

"It doesn't take much for a person to start showing the effects," said event organizer Danny Saville.

After three beers Jennifer Barber feels just fine,"I can feel it a little bit," she said. But she already blows over the limit at .082.

After one more beer she passes the field sobriety tests but on the breath test she now hits .093.

"I feel a little tipsy but I'm okay to drive. That's what I would normally say but you really aren't," said Barber

Officers say they see this kind of thing a lot.

"Oh yeah, all the time. People say they thought they were okay to drive or their friends offered to drive for them and they refused to do it then they end up in the back seat of our car," said Wichita Police Officer Stacey Mercer.

Police arrested more than 1,600 people for drinking and driving so far this year. That's down from more than 1,800 in 2007 and the lowest numbers since 2003 when they arrested more than 2,300 people.

While the numbers are going down, too many people still get behind the wheel drunk. That's why former DUI prosecutor Danny Saville started this demonstration 15 years ago.

"It's a good time of year to be letting people know that it doesn't take much to become inebriated," said Saville.

New Year's Eve is the third highest drinking and driving holiday following Thanksgiving and Christmas.

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