You Can Totally Get Busted For Driving Under the Influence of Rum Balls

File this under “live and learn.” One driver’s mishap can serve as a lesson to all other drivers thinking “cakes are cakes,” even when they’re made with rum.
Tommy got a DUI after eating too many rum balls, thinking "cakes are cakes" 1 photo
Photo: Nine News via
One man from Perth, Australia, tells he learned that the hard way, when he was pulled over by police and ultimately fined for DUI, even though he hadn’t touched a drop of alcohol. What he did, though, was eat a whole lot of rum balls which – you guessed it – is made with spiced rum.

“Cakes are cakes,” Tommy says. “Who’s going to question a cake?”

The police did.

Tommy had just left a friend’s birthday party at the end of August, and he’d eaten more than a fair share of the truffle-like confectionery cake. In fact, he was still eating them in his car, as the police pulled him over and performed a breath test on him, which came back positive. He imagined the cakes were harmless since they were made with rum essence and not the actual alcoholic beverage.

According to the media outlet, Tommy’s test returned a reading of 0.038, just a tad over the legal limit of 0.02 for learner drivers. Tommy pleaded guilty to DUI and was recently handed a reduced suspension of three months and the minimal fine, and he says he’s “thankful” the judge was so understanding of the circumstances of his faux-pas.

One doctor interviewed by says a blood test would have probably come back negative, in which case Tommy would have never had his license suspended in the first place.

That said, you can get drunk if you ingest large quantities of essence, whether it’s rum or vanilla extract. They’re made with alcohol and, while you won’t get drunk if you take just one sip, the story is different is you ingest larger quantities.

And driving under the influence of this type of flavoring isn’t all that rare. To be fair, in the instances that have made headlines in recent years, drivers drank the extract as it was, straight from the bottle. Tommy’s mishap shows you should be careful about your cake intake – if not for your waistline, for the content of alcohol in them.
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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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