Guess the lesson is don’t drink and drive.
I was driving my family down the highway yesterday and my 6 year old was raising hell in the back seat that I was breaking the law. All because I was drinking a can of Coke while driving.
True, and likely everyone knows that, and I suspect a fair percentage of the adult population has driven with a BAC above .08, and a fair percentage of U.S. seafarers have set foot aboard a ship with a BAC above .04. Nobody is perfect, we’ve all done stupid things, the question here is, what can the OP do about it.
Sounds like he learned his lesson. My advice to him would be to list it for sure, and jump through whatever hoops the USCG puts in his way.
The Government and everyone else has gotten far too carried away with ruining people’s lives forever over simple drunk driving offenses. And, a lot of other things too.
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A post was merged into an existing topic: DUI and Exxon Valdez
With all respect to your comment, I attend a fair number of drunk driving involved accidents as a volunteer EMT. I do this when I am home and off the boat. I work in a busy 911 system. Last night, I attended yet another DUI crash. Fortunately nobody was hurt in this one, but the drunk driver smashed up his own car and two others that he ran into while cruising along in a residential area.
I for one am getting a bit fed up with it. We have Uber, Lyft, taxis, etc and still people drink and get behind the wheel. The last asshole drunk driver I transported as a patient sent another motorist to the hospital on a backboard. Yet he kept bitching to me about what the cops were going to do with his car. I finally told him to shut up and I really don’t like to talk to patients like that.
A very high percentage of accidents are caused by drunk driving or excessive speed or both. A good percentage of drivers have been drinking, and a significant percentage are over the legal limit. A huge percentage of drivers are routinely speeding.
There is a simple and relative inexpensive way to significantly ameliorate the drunk driving problem. Require that all auto manufacturers install a device in every new car sold that measures bac and prevents a person over the limit from moving the car.
I agree, throw the book at people who are drunk, reckless, causing accidents, and hurting other people. But be reasonable with people who are driving safely but only slightly over the legal limit.
Millions of people in rural America do not have the option of taking Uber or a taxi.
Don’t mix apples and oranges, or apples and coconuts. Just because someone once got a DUI coming home from a party late at night in their own car, that doesn’t have any bearing on whether they would drink at sea.
Records of criminal offenses also need a reasonable time limit on how long they are available for routine reporting and consideration. We as a society cannot afford to publicly brand everyone a “criminal” forever over relatively minor offenses. Driving drunk at high speed and causing an accident that causes serious injury to others is a serious offense. Driving safely with a license plate light out while slightly over over the legal bac limit is a minor offense. This nonsense of anyone being able to buy anyone else’s lifetime criminal record for $19.95 needs to end.
Yeah but I’d rather sail with the guy or gal that was professional enough to either get a ride home or just pace themselves so they’d be sober by the end of the night. If you can’t manage to operate a car sober, I’m sure not gonna sleep as well when you’re on watch.
Perhaps, but as been pointed out, we all make mistakes, we’ve all done stupid stuff, should that prevent someone from earning a living?
Tugsailor makes an excellent point, a person can be a very skilled and professional seafarer and be a complete shit head ashore.
I agree that some people can separate work and time at home. But I’ve also seen guys with the shakes cuz they’re a couple days into the hitch and haven’t had a drink. Even if they are 100% sober, its gotta be taxing on the body to go through, and they certainly aren’t performing their best.
Now I think @tugsailor has a valid point about the government going overboard with criminal charges, the fewer laws we have to live with the better. I just think increasing the ‘gray area’ on DUI’s will lead to a less just system. At least now if you turn the keys and you’ve been drinking you always know there’s a risk it might be your career.
Yes, and that’s what I and likely most others do, and I’m pretty sure no one here advocates driving drunk, I advise people if they’re going to have even one drink to not drive.
The reality is however, that there will be people who get DUI’s, and should a single screw up end a career? Especially when the limit is .08, a level where most people don’t feel even slightly buzzed, yes their reactions are slowed, but again should that end a career?
Should a single mistake force a family into poverty, take away a pension end health care for your dependents?
I can already hear someone’s keyboard working on some version of. “but knowing all that shouldn’t…”
Yes we all know that, but the point here is, should one screw up cost any person that much?
Alright, how about the offender is penalized by one rank for a year? Master goes to Chief Mate, 3m to AB, etc. And being an OS is punishment enough .
How about the punishment be what the court system in the jurisdiction where the DUI happened says, the involvement of the USCG should be limited to if the person can safely preform their duties on board a ship
I actually really like that idea…
The same can be said for the ridiculous random drug testing as it relates to marijuana for the CG, and anyone else who has to deal with the gubmints random drug testing program. For someone to lose a license and or career over having tested positive for ingesting a plant 2 months before the “drug” test during their hitch off, which has no bearing on their time aboard at work 2 months later and mind you is a hell of a lot safer than alcohol, is even more ridiculous than someone involved with DUI charges. Though, I guess something will have to be figured out by the fed gubmint in the near future, if this H.R. 3884 MORE act were to get traction and marijuana be descheduled and decriminalized on a federal level.
I am very strongly anti-drug, and anti-excessive drinking, but we must accept reality. Its human nature for people to drink, and use stimulants. Many of society’s most creative and influential people were also renowned for excessive drinking. Some for drug use. Times change. 50 years ago American had a much stronger drinking culture than it does today. 50 years from now, it may shift back again.
Prohibition didn’t work 80 years ago, and it hasn’t worked today for the war on drugs either. Like it or not, drinking and drugs are part of life and our culture, and they always will be. Some reasonable and practical way must be found to manage it.
USCG mandated Drug testing does not work. We still get plenty of people onboard with drug problems.
If we are going to have drug testing, we need much better tests, and it has to be less discriminatory. It has to be for all drivers, and all employees, all school children, and all welfare and government check recipients.
Including every elected and appointed government official from the White House down.
I’ve worked with people who have multiple duis and still have their license so you might not have anything to worry about