Drinking and Driving is not worth the risk – it’s illegal, immoral, irresponsible, and may even lead to death or injury. When you choose to get behind the wheel after drinking alcohol, you put yourself and others on the road at risk of getting into an accident. Don’t drink and drive, call a cab or use public transportation instead.
With that said, here are 4 things you should know about when driving under the influence:
1) The Alcohol Limit
The legal limit for blood alcohol content in most countries is 0.08% – this means that you are legally drunk if your blood alcohol level exceeds this number. According to www.olsonlawfirm.com “impaired driving is one of the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents in Denver”.
But what does it mean to be ‘legally drunk’? The general consensus seems to be that any level over the legal limit makes you unfit to drive, but there are some caveats: You can still be considered under the influence at lower levels depending on where you live. For example, 0.05% still constitutes being under the influence in some places.
Women tend to be more affected by alcohol than men, regardless of body weight, and are therefore considered more at risk. Alcohol can cause dehydration; when combined with decreased coordination and awareness of one’s surroundings, people may not realize that they need to drink water. Nevertheless, if you get caught driving under the influence, it would be best to connect with a nearby DUI lawyer to protect yourself. Let’s say you were in Edmonton, Alberta. In that case, find dui lawyers edmonton as soon as possible and describe your situation honestly to them. They can inform you of your legal rights and help you regain your license.
2) The Effect
Alcohol impairs your judgment and slows down your reflexes which can be dangerous on the road. Since it takes longer for alcohol to absorb into your system when you are older, drink less if you are over the age of 50. Keep in mind that wine, beer, or mixed drinks all contain different amounts of alcohol. These factors must be taken into account when calculating how much you have had to drink. Remember that even though mixing drinks may slow down the rate at which you become intoxicated, each type of drink affects people differently.
Many people also believe certain types of alcoholic beverages “don’t count” towards their limit, but this is a myth. All types of alcoholic beverages will affect you as soon as they begin to break down in your system. There is no ‘best’ or ‘worst’ alcoholic drink, it’s all relative to the individual and things such as body weight, gender, metabolism, food eaten prior to drinking, etc. can have a major impact on how you metabolize alcohol.
There is no way to know how much you can drink before your body reaches the threshold of being considered “under the influence”. Your liver breaks down the alcohol in your body into a substance called acetaldehyde which then passes out of your body very quickly (most within about an hour). What this means is that there is no ‘safe amount’ or ‘safe time period’; it all depends on the individual’s metabolic rate. So, what’s your best bet if you plan on drinking, particularly if you’re going to drive afterward? Don’t! Better safe than sorry, right?
3) The Risks
Even though only a handful of countries actually have laws in place that strictly forbid drinking under the influence, impaired driving fatalities occur all over the world on a daily basis. It is estimated by the World Health Organization that about 1 in 10 road fatalities is due to alcohol consumption. This can cause serious injury or even death not only to the driver but also to people in other vehicles, on bicycles, motorcycles, etc.
There are many things that may go wrong when you drink and drive:
- You may become disoriented easily which could lead to accidents if you’re trying to get somewhere unfamiliar or if you have to pull over suddenly.
- You may fall asleep while driving.
- Your reaction times will be slow which means it’ll take longer for your body to prevent crashes. Driving at high speeds compounds this danger by requiring an exponentially greater amount of time braking or evasive action if needed.
- You may become distracted while trying to read road signs or avoid another driver’s erratic behavior; you’re more likely to miss things like pedestrians running across the street, cars parked in your path, etc. If you find yourself disoriented while driving or confused about where you are, pull over immediately and get some fresh air. If needed, call a cab or take public transportation until you feel completely sober!
If you do choose to drink and drive (which we hope you wouldn’t), plan ahead! Remember the number of drinks it took for you to get to your current level, and avoid adding more or trying “to play catch up” with your friends if you are behind. Don’t think that if you stop drinking abruptly that you will sober up quickly and be fine. Your body needs time to metabolize alcohol so don’t make any rash decisions about stopping after one drink. The best option is to just stay sober. You can be sober and still have a good time.
4) The Consequences
Drinking and driving is illegal, immoral, irresponsible, and may even lead to the death or injury of innocent people. In some countries where personal vehicles are scarce (or expensive), this behavior is less common, but sadly drinking and driving is still very much an issue in places where there is easy access to vehicles and cheap/free parking.
Drinking alcohol slows down your reflexes which can be dangerous on the road. It is estimated by the World Health Organization that 1 in 10 road fatalities are due to drinking while driving; this causes serious injury or even death not only to the driver but also to people in other vehicles, on bicycles, motorcycles, etc.
The best option? Stay sober – there are lots of fun activities that can be done sober without heavy machinery! If you do choose to drink and drive (which we hope you wouldn’t), plan ahead. Remember how much it took for you to get to your current level, avoid adding more drinks if too drunk already; don’t stop abruptly after just one drink. Remember this saying “Friends don’t let friends drink and drive” – so be safe!