Drunk Driving Remains a Threat on the Nation’s Roadways
WASHINGTON, D.C. — According to a report issued by NHTSA.GOV, thirty people die each day in drunk driving crashes in the United States.
The nation averages one drunk driving fatality once every 50 minutes even though the total number of drunk driving collisions has dropped by 33 percent over the last 30 years. Drunk driving remains a threat to public safety. Nearly 10,000 people die every year in drunk driving incidents. The monetary losses caused by drunk drivers exceeded $44 billion in 2010, which is the last year for which this information exists. In 2018, 29 percent of all fatal crashes involved a drunk driver. Shockingly, 231 of those killed in 2018 were fourteen years of age or younger. Men are more prone than women to drive drunk and cause a fatal collision.
Alcohol affects the central nervous system as soon as the body begins to digest it. Alcohol enters the bloodstream after absorption by the lining of the stomach and the small intestine. The liver filters the alcohol out of the blood and returns clean blood to the body.
Studies have shown that any alcohol consumption, while the Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) is 0.08 or greater, substantially increases the chance of a crash.
Any amount of alcohol consumption can increase the chances of a collision. In 2018 alone, 1,878 people died in car crashes involving alcohol, where one of the drivers had a BAC of 0.01 to 0.07.
Even after one drink, the ability to drive drops. With one drink, the driver will lose some judgment making abilities and feel more relaxed. With two drinks in an hour, resulting in a BAC of 0.05, the driver will experience difficulty steering and cannot appropriately respond to emergencies. By the time the driver's BAC hits 0.08, the driver has lost coordination, cannot process information correctly, and has problems with perception.
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