Impaired driving is one of America’s most often committed and deadliest crimes.
In 2006, more than 13,000 people were killed in crashes involving a driver or motorcycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher, which is illegal in every state.
Far too many people still don’t understand that alcohol, drugs and driving don’t mix. Impaired driving is no accident, nor is it a victimless crime.
Fortunately, much of the tragedy that comes from impaired driving crashes could be prevented if everyone would take a few simple precautions.
Always follow these tips for a safe night: Designate your sober driver before going out and give that person your keys. If you’re impaired, call a taxi, use public transportation or call a sober friend or family member to help get you home safely.
Promptly report drunk drivers you see on the roadways to law enforcement; wearing your safety belt while in a car or using a helmet and protective gear when on a motorcycle is your best defense against an impaired driver. And remember, Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk. If you know someone who is about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely.
The tragedies and costs from driving impaired do not just end at the potential death and injury caused by impaired drivers.
Driving or riding a motorcycle while impaired is not worth the risk. The consequences are serious and real. Not only do you risk killing yourself or someone else, but the trauma and financial costs of a crash or an arrest for driving while impaired can be significant.
Violators often face jail time, the loss of their driver’s license, higher insurance rates and dozens of other unanticipated expenses from attorney fees, other fines and court costs, car towing and repairs, lost time at work, etc.
Refuse a sobriety test in many jurisdictions and you can lose your license on the spot and have your car impounded. Plus, there is the added embarrassment, humiliation and potential loss and consequence after informing family, friends and employers.
Never drive drunk. Designate your sober driver in advance. Whether you’ve had one too many or way too many, make sure you don’t drive while impaired. Always remember that Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving.
If you have any concerns about your drug or alcohol use and would like to discuss them with a counselor, please contact Counseling Services at 610-902-8561 or stop by Grace Hall, Room 196.
This week’s health nut is a courtesy of Susan Fitzgerald of Cabrini’s Health Services.