Drunk-Driving: A Preventable Cause of Accidents, Injuries and Deaths
It is surprising to know that between the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the issue on the prohibition of alcoholic beverages was one issue hotly debated by two groups of people in America: the “dries” and the “wets.” The “dries,” pushed for the banning of alcohol, citing public morals and health as the bases of their argument, and claimed victory over the “wets” (the anti-prohibitionists). This victory was translated into law known as the “Prohibition in the United States,” and it was effective from 1920 to 1933. The Prohibition actually forbade anyone from selling, producing, transporting or importing alcoholic beverages all across the nation; this was intended to put an end to many Americans’ excessive alcohol consumption, especially during the colonial era. While this constitutional ban did not totally eliminate the presence of alcohol in the land, it, nonetheless, succeeded in keeping overall alcohol consumption low.
But that was history. Today, Americans 21 years old and above can drink freely anytime, anywhere, except in the more than 200 counties, specifically those in the Bible Belt (a number of communities in the Southern U.S.), which chose to keep the Prohibition in effect. There is actually nothing wrong with drinking, so long as it is not excessive and, most of all, if one does not drive afterwards. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD), it will take an average person about an hour to metabolize a standard drink, which can be a 12 ounce bottle of beer, 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits or 5 ounces of wine – all have the same amount of alcohol.
It is both upsetting and infuriating, though, for despite the anti-drunk driving law and the harsh penalties that await offenders, plus all the continuous ads and campaigns about the dangers of drunk driving, people still choose to get behind the wheel unmindful of the risk of accident they can cause due to alcohol impairment.
Impairment is the primary reason why drunk driving is prohibited. Being less sober, a person’s reflexes become slower. Besides this, impairment also affects a person’s general ability to focus on the road, judgment, perception, coordination and reaction time. The blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit in all U.S. states is 0.08%. Thus, anyone who will be caught driving with this BAC level (or higher) can be charged with alcohol-impaired driving or DUI/DWI, driving under the influence/driving while intoxicated.
There is simply no reason to drive drunk, as strongly emphasized by the law firm Spiros Law, P.C. This firm goes on to say that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and CDC never fall short in reminding and advising people to take a cab, use public transportation or ask a friend to drive them home (leaving their vehicle securely locked instead) if they have had drinks.
Due to the obstinacy of some people, however, drunk driving remains to be a major problem. According to the Abel Law Firm, car accident attorneys in Oklahoma, accidents are therefore a common occurrence on American roadways.
It is important for people, who have suffered losses from a car accident, to know that they may be eligible to receive compensation. Depending on the circumstances, they could be repaid for property damage, medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, or wrongful death.