Knowing When To Say When

By: Daniel Chanin Email
By: Daniel Chanin Email

Everyone knows drinking and driving can be a deadly mix, but knowing your limit isn't always so easy. That's why state troopers are doing their best to educate local drivers in a safe way.

It's a question many drinkers ask themselves when they're out and about trying to have a good time - "how much is enough?" On Friday night, the Highway Patrol used a Breathalyzer and other tests to help answer those questions.

Officers started by handing out cards, so drinkers could track their alcohol intake before getting behind the wheel.

"Most of the time people don't know," says Ken McCarthy, a bar patron. "It's a great way to get a feel for how alcohol will affect you."

Ken McCarthy took his Breathalyzer test about 10 minutes after guzzling down a 23-ounce beer. He was surprised when a reading showed his blood alcohol level was .034, nearly half the legal limit for drivers.

"You think 'I've only had two drinks...no big deal,'" says McCarthy. "It's definitely something you keep in mind in the future."

Free cab rides allowed other drinkers like Chris Rittenbach to focus less on learning their limits and more on reaching a higher number.

"I've had two 23 ounce beers in an hour," says Rittenbach. "It just means I've got a lot of work to do for the rest of the night."

The partnership between the Highway Patrol and the Scruples bar started five years ago when officers approached the bar about helping them curb drunk driving.


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