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Risk Factors of Drinking and Driving

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February 1, 2021

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It is a serious crime to drive under the influence—meaning driving while intoxicated by alcohol or other drugs. Drunk driving poses significant risks to the lives of yourself and the people around you, whether they are your passengers, other drivers on the road, or pedestrians. Accidents are more likely happen because of driver’s negligence due to alcohol intoxication, leading to costly medical expenses, legal obligations, and even deaths.

Car keys and glass of alcohol on table in pub or restaurant.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that almost 30 people die every day because of drunk-driving crashes in the United States, or over 10,000 lives every year. Indeed, you must never combine drinking and driving because it would only cause the major risk factors and consequences, which will be discussed further below.

Casual Invitations May Lead to Precinct Invitation

Casual invitations include attending a night out with friends, a birthday party, or an unexpected sudden invitation from a long-time-no-see friend. It’s easy to get drunk while enjoying long hours of conversation with friends and even strangers. But then, when it’s time to go home, you’ll realize that you’re too tipsy and find yourself being requested to pull over by a traffic officer, and eventually you’ll find yourself at your local police precinct.

If you have experienced a similar situation, it’s crucial to talk to a DWI lawyer to know your legal options. Click here to view the results of some case scenarios of drunk driving.

Looking for Fun Adventure Results in Disaster

When you’re young and still a novice driver, it’s natural to seek fun while driving. It is fun to drive a Land Rover, SUV, or sedan that can take you to beautiful places and exciting adventure. However, if you’re drunk driving, it’s no fun at all—you’re just risking your life and the lives of others.

Young handsome man driving his car while drinking alcohol in the traffic

Pushing Yourself to the Limit Impairs Driving Skills

Some people like to push themselves to the limit while on the road. They think that a little alcohol won’t affect their driving skills. Others even drink before driving on purposes because they believe that it will increase their confidence while driving in difficult terrains. On the contrary, challenging your driving skills when intoxicated can impair your driving skills. Here's how alcohol can impair your driving skills:

  • Decreases Vision: Your vision becomes blurred because of excessive alcohol consumption. It affects how you judge distances and peripheral vision.
  • Lack of Coordination: Drunk driving results in a lack of hand, foot, and eye coordination, which is crucial to safe driving. If you have trouble walking, cannot stand straight, or your body is swaying, ask someone to drive you home instead of yourself.
  • Slows Reaction Time: Alcohol affects how fast you’re able to respond in various situations, such as a pedestrian suddenly crossing the street or the vehicle in front of you suddenly stopping.
  • Reduces Concentration: Regardless of the amount of alcohol you take, it still affects your concentration. Alcohol dramatically reduces your attention span.
  • Inhibits Judgment: Operating motorized vehicles and machinery is not advisable when you’re under the influence of alcohol. Alcohol affects your ability to foresee potential driving problems and decision-making. Stay aware and alert of all surrounding driving conditions by not drinking alcohol before or when you’re driving.

You Want to be a Drag Racer

Many people dream of becoming a drag racer, or at least of experiencing the thrill of racing down the road and speeding towards a finish line. However, some of these people use alcohol to warm up or boost their mood before a race. Over speeding because of drag racing may result in serious accident injuries, such as spinal cord injury.
Severe injuries due to car crashes put you at risk of facing costly hospital bills and tedious legal claims. If you want to enhance your driving skills, here are some tips you can apply:

  • It is best to seek professional help and take one step at a time. Professional driving agencies are available to help you improve your driving skills.
  • Check the safety features of your vehicle before practicing difficult driving exhibitions. Make sure to have your vehicle regularly checked by a professional mechanic to ensure your safety.
  • Be physically and mentally prepared. Avoid drinking alcohol or taking illicit substances that can impair your coordination, vision, and judgment.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are many risk factors of drinking and driving, such as serious accidents and the risk of getting arrested for a DWI, which means facing penalties, fines, and other legal consequences later on. If you’re invited to attend a party or event, challenged to show off your driving skills, or want to drive on an adventure, make sure that you have clear judgment and are not intoxicated.

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