My family’s “golden rule” when it comes drinking and driving

Recently a local king county sheriff responded to KIRO news regarding a drunk driving arrest in Seattle.  The driver of a pick up truck was 22 years old, traveling the wrong way on I5, and caused a violent wreck with an oncoming SUV.  However the king county sheriffs deputy was not speaking on behalf of his law enforcement duties but as the father of the 22 year girl who caused the accident.

The deputy was quoted as saying “I’ve done my share of impaired driving enforcement, and you know there’s many many other avenues out there besides getting behind the wheel: call a friend, call family, take a cab, do something besides get behind the wheel,” Brewer said.

Now you may be wondering why I’m writing about this on my blog.  Well first of it is DUI related news in Seattle.  But secondly it got me thinking about when I was in high school and the “golden rule” my Dad had for my brothers and myself.  Whats the “golden rule” you ask.  My Dad created this principal I guess you could call it, he said the “golden rule” was under no circumstances were my brothers and I to drive if we drank.  We were to call my Dad and he would pick us up anywhere, anytime and no questions would be asked until the morning.

Now I’m not trying to bag on this girl or her father.  Clearly she made a bad decision and fortunately for her nothing more serious happened.  But I wonder if they had an agreement like my Dad had with my brothers and I whether all of this could have been avoided.  When my girls get old enough to drive don’t get me wrong they are not to drink alcohol until they are of age.  But if they do, and I’m not stupid or naive to think they probably will try it in high school (just like I did) then the golden rule of our family is to never drive even if you have a drop of alcohol.

Nowadays getting a DUI in Seattle can happen if you have a single drink.  And let’s not forget there is a zero tolerance for those under 21.  Meaning if you have a drop in your system, you’re under 21, you go to jail.  Its that simple.  So any parents out there that read this blog.  Have a “golden rule” with your kids.  It might prevent them from hurting someone due to a Seattle DUI arrest.

About the author: Matthew Leyba is a DUI lawyer in Seattle.  He is rated as a 10/10 by, and was named a Rising Star among Seattle DUI lawyers by Seattle Met Magazine, an honor less than 2.5% of all Attorneys receive.