Proving once again that DWI’s can and do happen to anyone and everyone, from all walks of life, all classes, all races, and all educational levels, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) resigned yesteday over his weekend arrest for Driving over the limit. Compounding his problems is the fact that FAA Administator Babbitt is in charge of an organization which promotes safety in the skies, and by the airlines, including combatting terrorism. An alleged Driving Under the Influence by Babbitt undercut his message of making Safety the Number One priority since Driving While Impaired is considered to be a threat to public safety due to numerous injuries and deaths caused every year by impaired driving.
Another problem for Babbitt was that he delayed telling his boss, the Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, for a considerable amount of time (days) after his arrest. When the Secretary of Transportation learned of the FAA Director’s arrest through a press release issued by the Fairfax, Virginia police, you can imagine he was none too happy. Secretary LaHood has taken the lead on transportation safety issues, more so than his predecessors, including the issues of DWI and distracted driving such as texting while driving or dialing while driving.
One of the lessons of this case is that, unfortunately, everyone is subject to getting a DWI: Doctors, Lawyers, Judges, janitors, airline pilots, factory workers, the fellow who lives next door to you, and yes you. Now, a fine career as FAA director has been derailed, and the country has lost the expertise of Mr. Babbitt, who was a former airline pilot for over 20 years AND the former President of the Pilots Union (ALPA). No one with his background had ever headed the FAA before. Don’t let one split second mistake ruin your career as happened to Mr. Babbitt: Call a cab or a friend. Don’t drive if you think you’re even CLOSE to the limit because the risks and costs of guessing wrong are TOO HIGH. AND, if you do get arrested for Drunk Driving in Minnesota, call an experienced, aggressive Minnesota DWI criminal defense attorney right away.