Drunk driving is a common occurrence. To soften the effect and severity of accidents due to drunk drivers, most reporters filing reports and/or quoting drunk driving statistics have chosen to refer to it as driving “under the influence” (of alcohol) or even lighter put still, driving while impaired or intoxicated.
We have come to accept these terms because of the social drinking aspect or our modern-day society, where having a couple of drinks with family, friends, relative, office colleagues and or for leisure purposes and then picking up the keys to drive home, driving drunk, in effect intoxicated to an extent.
The majority of the people caught for driving drunk misread or underestimated their level of impairment and intoxication, leading them to endanger their own lives and the lives of others.
Driving drunk, defined as over the legal limit, is also a crime. Yes it is illegal to be over the legal limit and get behind the steering wheel of an automobile, motorbike, truck or operate any form of mobile transportation and/or carry passengers when intoxicated. Most states, counties and countries have adopted a zero-tolerance for driving drunk.
Drunk driving, whether it refers to the person or act, or both, is actually currently occurring right now as you read this, and probably close to where you are. Although drunk driving is illegal in our society, it still happens all the time – despite all the negative publicity from accidents, advertising campaigns from advocacy groups and many thousands of arrests, deaths and injuries.
Although there are numerous laws and stricter and stricter punishments (including license revocations, fines and even incarceration) it is still happening on our roadways everyday.
According to drunk driving statistics extrapolated from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) as recently as 2004, an estimated 16,654 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes in the US – an average of one almost every half-hour.
The most interesting statistic quoted is that most of these drivers were surprisingly not alcohol dependent or alcohol abusers – they were, simply put, driving drunk. This is the type of person who can be stopped before they get behind the wheel, if given a chance to test themselves for alcohol impairment first.