Written on March 5, 2011 by Alannah Glenny
A colleague who works in our Vermont office recently had a close call with the law. At four in the afternoon driving through a small town, he was pulled over by police for having an expired inspection sticker. As he was handing over his license and registration, the officer asked, “Have you been drinking?”
“My shock must have been evident,” our colleague reports, “I said rather quickly ‘Goodness sakes, no! Why would you even ask, officer?’ ”
Well, you reek of alcohol,” the policeman said sternly. “How much have you had to drink?”
He explained that he hadn’t touched a drop except the root beer he had just picked up at a fast-food restaurantand then it hit him that he had used an alcohol-based hand sanitizer before eating his fish sandwich. There are a lot of viral infections going around Vermont, and this health researcher wasn’t taking any chances.
A little too much sanitizer had come out of the bottle and he vaguely recalls some spilling onto his jeans. After being grilled by not one but two policemen, he was finally let go with a warning about the inspection sticker.Morals of the story: Keep your inspection up-to-date. Keep your hands clean. But go easy on the hand sanitizer. More seriously, the story also reminds us that it pays to take special precaution when you get behind the wheel, as things that are safe and innocuous in other settings can have more serious implications when you’re in the car. That includes not only texting but also putting on makeup, reading, or wearing headphones. (