The Mobile Mardi Gras 2020 celebration kicks off this winter in downtown Mobile and runs nearly the entire month ending on Fat Tuesday, February 25, 2020.
That’s two-and-a half weeks of celebration for young and old in what’s known as the first known Mardi Gras in the U.S., even before New Orleans.
Expect marching bands downtown, with the streets filling up with brightly colored floats and crowds and families taking part in the festivities celebrating the 300-year old history of this coastal town.
Everyone should attend, but understand, where there are so many people brought together, safety awareness should be emphasized.
Staying Safe During Mobile Mardi Gras
If past performances are any indication, there are some precautions you and your family might want to take to stay safe during the celebration.
First of all, expect thousands of out-of-town visitors to be in our area to take part in the parties and balls, floats and parades, beads and wrapped Moon Pies with masked costumed mystic societies threading through downtown.
Whether it’s fair or not, the perception of alcohol and loud partying has colored the popular event. Drunkenness and nudity are prohibited under law. In 1987, fireworks were prohibited as well as pets, skateboards, and scooters or firearms.
The public cannot throw any objects at the parade.
Typically, we see arrests increase during Mobile’s Mardi Gras as well as parking citations.
Parents are encouraged to have identification in the pockets of their children, as they can become separated during the parades. And you should attend the parade in groups or with friends and family.
Staying Safe During Mardi Gras includes:
- Do not bring glass containers which are prohibited by city ordinance
- You are prohibited from following the floats and could be arrested
- Materials such a “Silly String” and “Snap & Pops” are illegal and possession could lead to an arrest
- Stay behind the barricades. They are there for a reason and the fine for cross is $298
- Stay in well-lit areas especially at night
- Establish a meeting place for your friends and family if you get separated
- Park in secure areas avoiding “No Parking” signs and hide valuables in the trunk
- Do not let children put Mardi Gras beads in their mouth because they’ve been found to contain high levels of lead, according to a Fox10 investigation in 2018.
- Remember sunscreen
- Be aware that flying beads could
strike you in the eye or face. You may want to wear glasses or sunglasses
DUI Arrests During Mardi Gras in Mobile
Penalties for DUI in Alabama can result in the loss of your license and heavy fines. A blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 % is considered legally intoxicated. Plan on taking an Uber or Lyft or arrange a ride with friends.
Bars might continue serving in the spirit of Mardi Gras, even after someone appears to be inebriated. But when that person hits the road, it puts all of us in danger.
Penalties for DUI in Alabama include:
- First offense: Up to one year in jail and a fine of $600 to more than $2,000. Refuse the breath test and you may be facing a mandatory ignition interlock. License suspension can last 90 days or have an ignition interlock device installed for three months.
- Second offense: You may be jailed for 5 days or face 30 days of community service. You may face of fine of not less than $1,100 and have your license revoked for one year or have an ignition interlock device for two years.
- Third offense: Spend 60 days in jail and face a fine of at least $2,100 and a suspension of your driver’s license for three years or three years of an installed ignition interlock device.
- Fourth offense: Expect to land in state prison for not less than one year and one day and up to 10 years, a fine not less than $4,100, and a five-year driver license revocation or ignition interlock device stalled for four years.
Note* If your BAC comes in over 0.15%, in other words you are twice the legal limit that will be considered an “aggravated circumstance” requiring the ignition interlock device.
Alabama does not confiscate your vehicle, but you will be required to attend alcohol education, assessment, and treatment.
Call an experienced Mobile DUI Attorney
If you are facing the aftermath
of a DUI arrest, you may experience difficulty in your profession when someone
checks into your background. A felony DUI means you are not eligible for
Please call Darley Law, LLC so we can begin aggressive and effective advocacy on your behalf. Don’t let one mistake have lasting effects on you, your family or your career. Call us in Mobile, AL at 251-732-7058 for a free consultation.