Car Safety Resource: Stop Drunk Driving!

Drinking and driving can not only cost you your driver’s license, it can also cost you your life. Each year, thousands of underage drivers end up in accidents as a result of drunk driving. Even more tragically, many die as a result of the accident or become seriously injured. Nationwide, police officers are cracking down on drunk driving. The drinking age is set at 21, and this is because studies have shown that younger people are more apt to be involved in drunk driving accidents. As people get older they take on more responsibility and are better able to avoid drinking and driving. There are many different repercussions for driving drunk and each one is very serious.

When charged with drinking and driving, the two main categories are DUI and DWI. DUI stands for driving under the influence, and DWI means driving while intoxicated. The difference in the meanings and the charges vary from state to state. Driving under the influence does not have to just include alcohol; it can also apply to illegal drugs and prescription medication that could impair driving. Either charge can lead to serious penalties and fines, jail time, and revocation of your driver’s license. The police officer determines your charges based on your BAC or blood alcohol content. This is usually tested using a breathalyzer which analyzes how much alcohol is currently in your blood stream. If you are above the legal limit and behind the wheel, you will be charged with drinking and driving. A lethal blood alcohol content level means you are in danger of getting alcohol poisoning, which can actually cause death. Higher blood alcohol content can cause your heart to stop and can be very dangerous.

  • MADD – Mothers Against Drunk Driving
  • Problem and Solution – Information about drinking and driving as well as suggestions for a solution.
  • Impaired Driving – You can find statistics and links to other resources here.
  • Century Council – This organization is leading the fight against drunk driving.
  • Data & Statistics – Here is some information from the Centers for Disease Control.
  • DUI Facts – Here is one state’s example of the fines and charges you may face if you get a DUI.
  • Random Facts – This page features 34 random facts about drunk driving.
  • DUI Foundation – Here is another organization dedicated to educating people about DUI.
  • Information on SR22 Insurance – Drivers who get a DUI have to get SR22 insurance.
  • DUI/DWI Laws – Read more about these laws here.

Approximately every 50 minutes, someone dies in an alcohol related crash. Sadly, most drunk driving accidents that occur involve people between the ages of 16-25. Many people who drive drunk have done it before. In fact, one statistic states that the average drunk driver has driven under the influence approximately 87 times before getting caught. Drunk driving is the most commonly committed crime in the United States and hundreds of thousands of people have died as a result of drunken driving. Aside from death, there are other serious consequences to DUI such as jail time, community service, heavy fines, and no driving for a year or longer.

There are many things you can do to avoid a DUI. First, if you go to a party or event where there is alcohol, plan to call a cab or utilize a designated driver. The designated driver will stay sober and be the person in charge of getting everyone home safely. Police now often set up DUI check points, where they look for and monitor people driving drunk. This preventative measure helps to catch drunk drivers before they get too far on the road. There are many programs locally and nationally designed to help educate teens on and prevent drunken driving. If you see someone driving who appears to be intoxicated, first call the police immediately. Stay away from the driver as much as possible. Do your part and influence your friends to stay sober or always use a designated driver if there will be drinking involved. Being diligent and aware can help save lives and ensure that you do not become another tragic statistic.

By Quinten Kenrick

 

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