UHP Gets Drivers Drunk

UHP Gets Drivers Drunk

Save Story

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

Kimberly Houk ReportingThe Utah Highway Patrol took a unique approach today in teaching several people that drinking and driving don't mix. They conducted an experiment where volunteers drove an obstacle course several times.

But the first couple of times they drove it was different from the last time around the course. The first couple of times around the obstacle the drivers were sober. But several hours later the drivers took their last trip around drunk. Officers wanted the volunteers to see first hand how much alcohol can affect their driving.

Orange cones made up the obstacle course. With different twists and turns drivers also had to pay attention to a stop light. The six sober drivers all navigated the course without hitting a single cone, then the drinking began.

With officers acting as bartenders, the alcohol started flowing freely. The drivers had almost two hours to sit around and drink.

Scott Little, Volunteer: I'm a non-drinker so it's a totally new experience for me."

Meet Scott Little. He's a DUI attorney who wanted this experience to help him with his clients.

Little: “I believe it will be a valuable tool for me to actually recognize what it feels like to have a certain number of drinks and then get behind the wheel of a car."

And that's exactly what he did after drinking eight ounces of vodka and failing a few sobriety tests.

Officer: “I want you to follow it with your eyes and don't move your head."

Scott's bloodshot eyes followed the pen, but when it came time to walk in a straight line he stumbled.

Officer: “Based on what we see today, he shouldn't be driving."

But he still had to take one last trip around the course. This time he was slower and took out seven cones before completing the course.

Little: “I personally would not feel comfortable climbing behind the wheel of a car."

And that's the message officers wanted to get across.

Luke Stradinger, Utah Highway Patrol: “If you hurt somebody or kill somebody, you can never go back and you'll have to live with that the rest of your life. And so will the people that you hurt, and I hope no one will be willing to take that chance."

This is the first time this type of experiment has been performed in Utah. Officers say there was only one surprise; one of the volunteer drivers actually drove the course better after drinking eight ounces of whiskey.

Most recent Utah stories

Related topics



Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the KSL.com Trending 5.
By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

KSL Weather Forecast