What would you do…if you’re driving drunk and hit an object on the interstate—and you have alcoholic biochemistry? (TAR Lite # 20)
1. Pull to the shoulder of the interstate and park until you sober up?
2. Keep driving, but more slowly and really carefully?
3. Pull over to the shoulder, take a look at the damage and, in a moment of clarity, decide maybe you should get off at the next off-ramp and find the nearest motel to sleep it off?
4. Keep driving, full speed ahead, and hit another object—this time a concrete barrier—disabling the vehicle, stopping in the fast lane, where you climb into the back seat and promptly fall asleep?
Congratulations if you selected # 4, which is what Sheri Reuther, 40, did on I-10 in Louisiana. A trooper found her car blocking the far left lane, Reuther unconscious in the back seat and the doors locked and windows rolled up. Fearing for her health and safety after she failed to respond to knocks on the windows, the trooper smashed a small rear window, rousing her. Once the doors were opened, he found an open alcoholic beverage in the front seat cup holder, so he attempted to administer a field sobriety test. “Attempt” is the operative word here, since she was “so impaired” he had to help her stand up and ended the test before its completion because he was afraid she’d injure herself. Unsurprisingly, she was booked not only for hit and run and DUI, among other charges, but also on a warrant for a previous DUI.
Alcoholics who are so stinking drunk they fall asleep in their cars in an inappropriate spot are likely late-stage addicts, regardless of age. This escapade would have been surprising had she not had a previous arrest for DUI. The fact her car wasn’t hit or she wasn’t killed is surprising, except it must have been a lightly traveled section of the interstate. Imagine trying to avoid a parked car on the freeways of a busy metropolis! But then, alcoholics often are lucky, which is the reason why our regular TAR’s “Antic of the Month” consists of alcoholics deserving of a Darwin Award, except they lived.