Picture this: it’s St. Patrick’s Day, and you go out with all your friends. Next thing you know, you have had a few too many drinks. Sure, you could grab your keys and drive yourself home, but is that smart?
Designated drivers may be the barrier between life and death. The higher your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) rises, the worse the effects become. Confusion and impaired judgment are two side effects of heavy alcohol consumption that can seriously affect your ability to drive. Your impaired judgment may lead you to believe that you are okay to operate a vehicle, but either pay attention to a drink limit that you don’t “stretch” or let a sober friend you trust implicity decide for you.
Research done by Northwestern Medicine states that drivers with a BAC of 0.08 or higher are 11 times more likely to die in a car accident than non-drinking drivers. Certain states have increased penalties for individuals who drive with a BAC of 0.15 or above due to the heightened number of fatal accidents.
NHTSA found that around 28 people die in a drunk-driving accident each day, which is one person every 52 minutes. In 2019, there were 10,142 deaths due to impaired people choosing to drive. These deaths were the drivers or passengers of the vehicle and innocent people going about their everyday lives on the road.
St. Patrick’s Day is the fourth-biggest drinking day of the calendar year in America. The average American consumes roughly four drinks on this holiday. Traffic Safety Marketing found that during the 2015-2019 St. Patrick’s Day period, from 6 pm March 16th until 6 am March 18th, there were 280 lives lost. All these lives were taken due to people’s intoxicated driving decisions.
Insurance rates increase after receiving a DUI; these rates differentiate from state to state. However, the average cost of car insurance with a DUI on record is $2,610 annually. In fact, rates can climb to a 70% – 80% increase.
Choose to designate a sober driver to be responsible for you, your friends and your keys. One decision to drive impaired could quickly cost a human life. Don’t let a drunk decision ruin your life or someone else’s.
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