The Dangers of Drinking and Driving

Avery Follansbee

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There is an alcohol related crash in the United States every 51 minutes – that’s 27 a day. Alcohol reduces function of the brain, impairing reasoning, thinking, and muscle coordination. This makes drunk driving a poor choice for several reasons.

If you get pulled over while being under the influence, police will use a breathalyzer,  device that measures the amount of alcohol on a driver’s breath. They may also use a blood test. If somebody’s alcohol level is .08% or higher, it is considered illegal. Having a BAC (blood alcohol concentration) of .08  makes you 11 times more likely to get into a car accident. If your BAC is at .15 you are 380 times more likely to get into an accident. Some of the skills that are required to drive begin to deteriorate at a BAC of .02.

A drunk driver will have (on average) driven over 80 times while intoxicated before getting caught. According to, between 50 and 75 percent of people continue to drive under the influence even after they’ve received their licenses back.

The first DUI, drivers will normally be punished with fines, community service, license suspension, and possible probation. With a second DUI, drivers will be arrested and put in jail for 96 hours-1 year. Every state has different rules for getting a DUI. In 2016, over 1 million people were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , 1 out of 10 teenagers drink and drive. Young drivers are 17 times more likely to get into a car accident when they have a BAC of .08. The percentage of teenagers who drink and drive has gone down 50% since 1991. Kids and teens who get involved with alcohol at a young age are 7 times more likely to be involved in an alcohol-related crash in their lives. Every 15 minutes a teenager will die due to drunk driving.

There are also ways to detect drunk drivers while you are on the road so you can avoid them to keep yourself safe. Drunk drivers may be swerving, turning abruptly, stopping for no reason, driving slowly or on the wrong side of the road. If you can obviously tell somebody is driving while drunk, you can take precaution by calling police and keeping your distance.

Avoiding drinking and driving can be very simple. If you are planning on drinking alcohol, find a designated driver. You could also use Uber or Lyft, these are apps that have saved many lives from drinking and driving. “I got home safely last time” is not a good excuse.