Drunk Driving

Goal: My goal is to be able to make people more aware of the growing issue of drunk driving and help me in finding ways to help prevent it.

Blog #1: The Issue

I have been interested in the topic of drunk driving since i was a little girl. When i was growing up and attending Guilderland Elementary school one of the teachers who worked there that everyone knew very well was killed by a drunk driver one morning while running on 155. That incident made a huge impact on my school and really upset many people around our town. After that someone close to me flipped a car drunk driving and is lucky to have their life today. His dad then took him to a museum of cars that were totaled by drunk drivers and I went with him. Seeing that really opened my eyes to how severe drunk driving is. I never really understood why people drink and drive when they are fully aware that they could take someone's life in the blink of an eye. Drunk driving has really affected my life and I would love to be able to make people more aware of the situation and find out ways to help prevent it. (176 words)


Blog #2: Victim (Child)

This article is about a local man who was accused of DWI with an innocent child in his car. Thank god the man was stopped before he was able to harm himself or the child. This is not my first time reading something like this and that scares me. Innocent victims are being hurt and even killed each day by drunk drivers. Drunk driving is a major problem around the country and is no less of an issue on our own streets. Crimes like this make you become more aware of how bad this problem really is. Something needs to be put in place to help prevent this issue more. There are things in place now but they are obviously not doing a good enough job if crimes like this are still occurring. There is no reason why someone should have to think twice about going for a morning jog because they could be killed by a drunk driver. The policy that comes into focus in this issue is that we need to be more aware of this situation and work on ways to prevent it. (212 words)

"Schenectady Man Accused of DWI with Child in Car." Times Union. Web. 07 May 2012. <http://www.timesunion.com/default/article/Schenectady-man-accused-of-DWI-with-child-in-car-3521299.php>.

Blog #3: Problems and Solutions

Driving while intoxicated is very dangerous and every single injury and death caused by drunk driving is totally preventable. Drivers with high blood alcohol content are at greatly increased risk of car accidents, highway injuries and vehicular deaths. Possible prevention measures include establishing DWI courts, suspending or revoking driver licenses, impounding or confiscating vehicle plates, impounding or immobilizing vehicles, enforcing open container bans, increasing penalties such as fines or jail for drunk driving, and mandating alcohol education. Statistics say that the average blood alcohol content among fatally injured drinking drivers is .16. The relative risk of death for drivers in single-vehicle crashes with high blood alcohol content is 385 times that of someone who hadn’t been drinking. To protect yourself and others while you’re out be responsible and volunteer to be the designated driver! Although the amount of crashes that are alcohol-related has dropped dramatically in recent decades, there are still far too many such preventable accidents. (157 words)

"Alcohol: Problems and Solutions." Drinking & Driving. Web. 07 May 2012. <http://www2.potsdam.edu/hansondj/DrinkingAndDriving.html>


Blog #4: Statistics

Thousands of people die each year from alcohol related crashes. In 2009, there were 10,839 fatalities in crashes involving a driver with a BAC of .08 or higher. Of the 10,839 people who died in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes, 7,281 (67%) were drivers with a BAC of .08 or higher. An average of one alcohol-impaired-driving fatality occurs every 48 minutes. A total of 1,314 children age 14 and younger are killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes each year. Of those 1,314 fatalities, 181 (14%) occurred in alcohol-related driving crashes. The rate of alcohol impairment among drivers involved in fatal crashes is four times higher at night than during the day.16 percent of all drivers involved in fatal crashes during the week were alcohol-impaired, compared to 31 percent on weekends. The percentages of drivers involved in fatal crashes with a BAC level of .08 or higher is 29 percent for motorcycle riders and 23 percent for both passenger cars and light trucks. (157 words)

"Drunk Driving Statistics." Drunk Driving Statistics. Web. 09 May 2012. <http://www.alcoholalert.com/drunk-driving-statistics.html>.

Blog #5: Facts

As if alcohol consumption itself isn't a big enough problem, people decide more often than not to drink then get into a vehicle and drive. Drunk driving is responsible for more deaths than you would think each year. Half of all holiday driving fatalities are alcohol-related. About 80 percent of alcohol-related fatalities are caused by beer consumption. About 30 percent of Americans are involved in an alcohol-related crash sometime during their lifetime. Surprisingly most people with DUIs are not alcoholics. Many are 18-20 years old; they are responsible for more than 10 percent of the alcohol related crashes in America. Although these numbers are incredibly high and shocking there are many ways to make sure you are not another one of these statistics. If you are drinking make sure you find yourself a designated driver, take public transportation, or offer to pay for a cab for you and your friends to make sure everyone gets home safely. (157 words)

Fun Fact:

Australians call drunk driving "drink driving"

"Drunk Driving Facts." Drunk Driving Facts. Web. 09 May 2012. <http://www.calculateme.com/car-insurance-articles/drunk-driving-facts.htm>.


Blog #6: A Victims Story

About 248,000 people are injured in accidents where police reported that alcohol was present, meaning one person is injured in a drunk driving accident in the US every 2 minutes. These incredible statistics reveal why drunk driving is a major public policy issue. This is a story about two best friends who had gone out to a club one night and then later made the not so smart decision to drive home. Less than an hour later, one of the girls was dead. And her best friend would be charged with killing her. Jessica Rasdall, the 18 year old who is in charge of killing her best friend Laura Gorman now tells her story to high school students all over in a speech that never varies, describing the minute details of that tragic night in hopes to make the students more aware of how serious this really is and make sure they never have to go through what she has to play over and over again in her head each day. This is just one of the many tragic stories that drunk driving has lead to. Things like this should not have to happen and there needs to be a stop to it. (203 words)

GOLDBERG, ALAN B. "Drunken Driving Crash Shattered Teen's Life." ABC News. ABC News Network, 02 June 2009. Web. 09 May 2012. <http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=7726721>.


Blog #7: Possible Solutions

Although drunk driving is slowly decreasing from previous years it is still a major problem today. Things such as increased awareness from media campaigns, greater enforcement efforts and penalties, and lower blood alcohol concentration thresholds across the country have contributed to the decreasing numbers of drunk driving accidents but I believe there is still much more that we should be doing to stop this. Some say that increasing funding for publicity and more frequent sobriety checkpoints will help solve this terrible crime but others say that since sobriety checkpoints are publicized in the media, drunks learn the locations and find alternate routes around them. Studies suggest that the reason the problem continues is because of those with alcohol-use disorders, the so-called "chronic" offenders. I believe that if you are charged with any kind of drunk driving you should be required to have a machine put in your car, like a breathalyzer, that you have to blow into before you can start the car. This machine will test their blood alcohol level, and if there is even the slightest amount of alcohol in their system, the car will not start and the company will be notified. This would prevent any kind of drunk driving from occurring. (205 words)

"Drunk Driving: One Solution." Drunk Driving: One Solution. Web. 15 May 2012. <http://www.alcoholalert.com/drunk-driving-solutions.html>.


Blog #8: New technology stopping drunk drivers

With the increasing technology in today's world you would think they would have come up with something to stop this problem from occurring by now and they finally have. New technology is being introduced that will someday make a huge difference. This technology will stop drunk drivers in their tracks. This prevents anyone who is legally drunk from being able to start their cars. The detection systems would be invisible to the driver by either having breath analyzers built into the steering wheel that can sense alcohol on the drivers breath immediately or touch sensors on the cars starter buttons that can detect alcohol levels through your skin. Although they are still trying to fine tune the technology, it is said that it is extremely promising. It is said to be the "seat-belt of our generation" and "the biggest opportunity to save lives". The government and auto makers hope one day to have these devices in every car. I have always thought this would be a great idea and hope someday this is saving lives. (175 words)

"New Technology to Combat Drunken Driving." ABC News. ABC News Network. Web. 15 May 2012. <http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/video/technology-combat-drunken-driving-car-starter-breath-skin-alcohol-blood-level-detection-12782025>.