Essay on Problem of Drunk Driving

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Driving after drinking according to the CDC is an act that continues to happen across the United States(CDC). According to The California Highway Patrol if you drive while impaired could put you in situations like getting arrested, or being involved in a traffic crash that causes serious injury or death(CDC). Approximately one-third of all traffic crash fatalities in the United States involve drunk drivers with a BAC of .08 or higher(NHTSA). There were 10,511 people killed in 2018, in reportedly preventable crashes. In fact, within the 10 years ranging from 2009 to 2018, there were more than 10,000 people that died every year in drunk-driving-related crashes(NHTSA). In a study performed by the CDC men were more likely than women to be in a fatal crash that was caused by drinking while driving(NHTSA). In this same study, 21% of men were drunk in these crashes in 2018, compared to 14% of women(NHTSA). According to The California Highway Patrol, driving a vehicle while impaired is a crime. Enforcement of drunk-driving laws has been a factor in reducing drunk-driving deaths since the 1980s(NHTSA). Charges can range from misdemeanors to felony offenses, and penalties for impaired driving can include driver’s license revocation, fines, and jail time(NHTSA). A first-time offender will usually be looking at $10,000 in fines and legal fees, States require offenders to install ignition interlock devices which will be at the driver’s own expense(NHTSA). An ignition interlock device is a breath test device connected to a vehicle’s ignition(CDC). The vehicle will not start until the driver has blown into the interlock and has recorded a BAC that is below an already set low limit, usually .02 BAC. NHTSA supports the evolution of ignition interlocks which has proven technology that has kept drunk drivers from operating a motor vehicle(NHTSA).

The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that teens and elderly adult drivers who are driving while impaired are affected ten times more than their counterparts(DrugAbuse). According to The National Institute on Drug Abuse, teens who are inexperienced in driving are more likely than other drivers to underestimate or not be able to recognize dangerous situations promptly (DrugAbuse). A study conducted by The National Institute on Drug Abuse revealed, that teens speed and allow less distance between vehicles(DrugAbuse). This same Study from the National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that car crashes are the primary cause of death among young people between the ages of 16 to 19 years(DrugAbuse). A study by NIH revealed that college students who can attain a car found that 1 in 6 had driven under the influence of a drug other than alcohol at least once in the past year(DrugAbuse).

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In NIH research they found, Marijuana was the most common drug used, which was then accompanied by the narcotic drug cocaine and your typical prescription pain relievers(DrugAbuse). Marijuana was found to be used while driving with 35% positive tests. Of the more than 400 drugs that the federal National Highway Traffic Safety Administration tracks, marijuana was related to 35% of positive tests that were recorded(CNN). Usage for marijuana has varied across the states with 30% to be used medically and 50% used recreationally. The usage laws have varied with marijuana being used for medical purposes being legal in 29 states, and laws have allowed recreational use in eight states. Driving while impaired at any level is identified as illegal by authorities anywhere in the United States(CNN). Amphetamines were found as one of the substances that were detected in CDC studies. Amphetamines were recorded for 9% of substances that were detected, and more than half of the positive tests in the report by the CDC were caused by 'other drugs.' These numbers reveal several known and unknown substances that can ultimately contribute to a drug impairment incident(CDC).

One specific case where a man in his 20s was killed in a car crash by a drunk driver in a semi-truck. At the scene, you could see the young man’s car crashed into pieces, glass, and debris scattered everywhere, bloodstains from the young man within the cockpit of the vehicle he was driving. The truck was damaged by the crash, you could still see the hood collapsed forward and the bumper bent inward. The truck was untouched compared to the young man’s car, the aftermath was seen by witnesses around who saw the young man’s car crushed along the freeway. As reported by multiple sources driving while impaired kills 29 people every day in the United States in motor vehicle crashes that involve alcohol or impaired drivers. This is one death every 50 minutes. The annual cost of alcohol-related crashes totals more than $44 billion(CDC). CDC reports that driving while impaired is a problem that must be controlled so that many other lives cannot be ruined and, therefore should be treated with concern and importance by the American public(CDC). 

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Essay on Problem of Drunk Driving. (2024, May 16). Edubirdie. Retrieved July 12, 2024, from
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