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Does craft beer culture lead to drunk driving?

Craft beer culture is as strong now as it's ever been, from one side of the United States to the other. Beer isn't just cheap lagers anymore. There are many varieties, many flavors and a whole subculture of people who are interested in trying out as many different types as they can.

This culture leads to beer festivals, where hundreds or even thousands of people show up to try local beers. It leads to more craft breweries than there have been in the past, with people often choosing them over local bars.

This could be problematic, one expert believes. The craft beer culture may lead to more drunk driving arrests.

For instance, some people who go out to a brewery may be more likely to order a last round before getting in the car than if they were at the bar. They're not drinking the same beer every time. As they seek to try more varieties, the amount of rounds they get dictates their exposure. They're more driven to try one more, even if they're on the edge of the legal limit.

Festivals create their own problems. They may not have shuttle services. Those who go to them spend hours drinking. They try as many kinds as they can. While there may be some designated drivers, this isn't the type of event people love to attend if they're not drinking.

Craft beer culture can be fun and exciting, but it may lead to an increase in drunk driving. If you're stopped on the way home from a brewery or a festival and you're facing charges, be sure you know your legal rights.

Source: Tampa Bay Times, "Craft beer drinkers, do you think much about drunk driving?," Justin Grant, accessed June 16, 2017

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