Yesterday’s blog entry explained the definition of “Intoxication” in the Texas Driving While Intoxicated (“DWI”) section of the Texas Penal Code. Among other things, we explained that a person can be convicted of DWI even if they consume NO alcoholic beverage. For example, if over-the-counter or prescription drugs cause a person to lose the normal use of their physical or mental faculties, they are considered intoxicated.
Many responsible and otherwise law-abiding citizens are convicted of DWI simply because they fail to read (and/or follow) the warning labels on over-the-counter or prescription drug packaging.
Drugs people take for common ailments such as the common cold, allergies, insomnia, anxiety, motion sickness, and ADHD can cause (or contribute to) a person becoming intoxicated as defined under Texas Law. These ever-present drugs contain warnings such as:
“MAY CAUSE DROWSINESS - Alcohol may intensify this effect”
“USE CAUTION WHEN OPERATING A CAR OR DANGEROUS MACHINERY”
“MEDICATION MAY IMPAIR YOUR ABILITY TO DRIVE OR OPERATE MACHINERY”
“USE CARE until you become familiar with effects”
In short, use of commonly available drugs, especially when mixed with alcohol, can cause you to become legally intoxicated. As such, you should always read and follow the warnings that accompany any drug you take. Doing so, may reduce the chances that you will operate a vehicle while intoxicated, will help protect you and the public from potential injury, and will reduce the chances that you will be charged with driving while intoxicated.
Tom D’Amore has handled hundreds of
DWI cases during his 23 year career as a Dallas criminal attorney. If you have been charged with driving while intoxicated,
D’Amore Law Firm to schedule an appointment for a free consultation with Tom D’Amore.