In a preliminary breathalyzer test Justin A. Clark, 24, of Iowa, tested at .40, or five times the legal limit for alcohol consumption of someone trying to operate a motor vehicle. A blood test later at the hospital showed his actual blood alcohol content was even higher, prompting one police official, North Liberty Police Chief Jim Warkentin, to remark that it was the highest blood alcohol reading he had seen in more than 20 years on the force.
Clark was charged with one count of driving under the influence of alcohol. He is lucky he is not dead. Physicians who have studied alcohol consumption say that many people will suffer severe side effects (including death) from consuming too much alcohol and that a person with a blood alcohol content of .40 is “clinically dead.” But some how, Clark continued to drive. Witnesses reported seeing the man striking curbs and weaving back and forth across the road as he traveled through North Liberty. When asked by officers what time it was, Clark reportedly said,”Three, but now it is four.”
Although much attention has been paid recently to distracted driving but driving under the influence of alcohol has not become less dangerous as a result. in fact, because people are focusing so much on putting away their handheld devices while they drive they just might be forgetting to also be certain they are sober when they slide behind the wheel.
Clark faces massive fines, the possibility of jail time and the suspension of his driver’s license as a result of his arrest. But if police had not stopped him in his tracks the situation might have turned out even worse for him.