Drunk driving happens every day taking steps to prevent it can go a long way when it comes to saving lives. A lot of people are killed each and every day because of a drunk driver. If you have a drink, it is best to put up the keys and wait until you’re able to drive. Making sure to exercise good judgment by assigning a designated driver, taxi, or other type of transportation when you decide to drink can save lives, and also keep you from being put behind bars. The statistics are astonishing, and you can be a part of lowering them.
Why is the drinking age set at 21?
The drinking age is set at 21 because this is the age that the government feels people are old enough and mature enough to make sound decisions. However, underage drinking is still a problem. Even though the legal drinking age is 21, a lot of underage people are still able to obtain alcohol and consume it. Some of these people get into vehicles and decide to drive, and others who are over the legal drinking age do the same. More than 25,000 lives have been saved in the United States due to the legal drinking age being 21. Crashes were reduced 16 percent when the age rose to 21, and keep more innocent lives out of harm.
Define DUI and DWI
DUI stands for driving under the influence, meaning the driver is operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. DWI, on the other hand, stands for driving while intoxicated. Some states might use one or the other depending on the law in that specific state when the person is driving while drunk. When both are used, a lot of times a DWI is when the person is drunk driving, and a DUI is when the person is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, even when it is below the state minimum. There are many forms of DUI and DWI such as an aggravated DWI charge when the person has double or more the amount of legal alcohol in their system while driving. Alcohol is the most abused substance throughout the United States. One person dies every half hour at the hands of a drunk driver.
Legal and Lethal BAC.
The legal BAC in the majority of the states throughout the United States is .08. If you’re under the drinking age and are found to be operating a vehicle with a BAC of .03 or more, you will be charged. Aggravated DWI charges occur when the blood alcohol level is up around 0.16. DUI charges can also be levied if your blood alcohol level is .03 or higher, but not necessarily. Even if you had one drink, it is best to wait to drive home. You could hurt yourself or someone else, when driving home. Driving while intoxicated carries a hefty fine and a year without driving privileges. The charge will also go on your driving record.
Demographics and Statistics of Drunk Drivers
Throughout the United States, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has estimated that close to 18,000 people have died in 2006 due to alcohol related collisions while on the road. This number represents 40 percent of the total traffic deaths in the United States. 275,000 were injured in these alcohol related accidents. Close to 1,500,000 arrests were made throughout the nation for driving while under the influence of alcohol. A fatal collision is deemed as being ‘alcohol related’ if the driver, non-motorist, or passenger has a BAC of 0.01 percent or higher. 60 percent of the BAC values of crashes are unknown or missing. Drivers with a BAC of 0.10 percent are up to 12 times more likely to get into a collision that is fatal than drivers that have had no alcohol at all.
Consequences of Driving While Intoxicated: Death, DWI, Jail Time
There are many consequences to drunk driving. Some of the more severe consequences of drunk driving can include, but are not limited to, injury, jail time, or death. Many times, the drunk driver might walk away with minor injuries while everyone else, passengers and the other vehicle involved might die as a result of the one person deciding to drive. DWI or DUI are also consequences that can arise. This can put a strain on your driving record and your wallet. Driving while intoxicated is not something that should be taken lightly. It is something that should not be done at all.
There are many solutions that prevent DWI and DUI. Stating the facts when having a conversation about the dangers of drunk driving and underage drinking is a good start. Simply put, it should just not be done by anyone. Encourage teens to be above peer pressure, and to know that you’re always there no matter why they need you. There are programs out there that discourage underage drinking such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). These programs can enlighten and educate teens on the risks of drinking and driving. If you ever spot a drunk driver on the road, you should never drive next to them or in front of them. You should also pull your vehicle over, and report to authorities the information of the vehicle that you suspect a drunk driver is driving. Being safe rather than sorry is always important.Copyright © The Classic Car-Nection - 1995-2001 (all rights reserved)