Drugs and Alcohol are the causes of driving drunk. DUI convictions happen every day due to impared driving. 123 DUI Online investigates the science behind intoxication of various substance and driving with any in your system eventually leads to signing up for an online DUI school. Cannabis or marijuana is a controlled substance and is estimated to be involved in 20% of all fatal crashes.  Just because a driver possesses a medical marijuana endorsement, does not suggest that he or she can drive while they are under the influence of cannabis.  If it is determined that a drivers under the influence of marijuana or any other controlled substance, the driver will undergo a chemical test to make a determination.  

As I mentioned earlier the possession of a driver’s license implies that you must submit for chemical testing. The reason that cannabis is involved in such a high number of crashes is that it causes sleepiness, impaired perception and decrease focus as well as slowed reaction times. When alcohol’s potential harm to the body is compared against other drugs, it is moderate to highly addictive and moderately harmful. That said, alcohol is the costliest drug to society. Excessive drinking is estimated to cost $220 billion annually in the United States.

The Impact of Alcohol on the Brain

Many of your body’s organs are destroyed by alcohol. For example, as your heart slowly  fails due to unhealthy enlargement, you will have difficulty catching your breath. Once your heart begins to enlarge, you will always be struggling to get more air into your lungs.

It doesn’t matter what type of alcohol you favor, the effects are the same.  One drink with 1.5 fluid ounces of 80 proof Vodka is equivalent to a small glass or 5 ounces of wine or 12 ounces of beer. At least 20% of the alcohol you consume is immediately absorbed by the stomach and quickly makes its way to the brain.

The remainder of the alcohol in your system follows pretty quickly. The rate that alcohol is metabolized by the body is influenced by the individual’s gender, size or physical condition.  But one thing cannot be denied.  The more you drink, the longer you will be impaired.

Now the key point is that for every drink a person consumes it takes approximately one hour for men and 1 ½ hours for women to metabolize one drink. Looking at these beverages, do you really believe that someone’s life, your freedom or your bank account is worth the taste or effects that alcohol gives you.

How does alcohol affect your driving skills?

1st alcohol decreases the brain’s ability to control focus, awareness and the ability to prioritize multiple demands which is  not a good thing when your car is moving down the road. It may come as a surprise to some people, but drinking alcohol impairs judgment. Thoughts become disorganized and rational behavior becomes compromised. An intoxicated driver’s vision blurs and peripheral vision will narrow.

In other words, a person develops tunnel vision. Drunk drivers will commonly miss a moving object. Because the eyes, brain and muscles are not functioning normally, drunk driving reaction time is slowed by up to 3.5 times when compared to a sober driver. This impairment begins before being considered legally impaired. These impairments lead to a DUI conviction and attendance of a DUI school online.

Contrary to what many people believe, cannabis does impair a driver’s ability to operate a vehicle.  In 2012, the British Medical Journal concluded that drivers who consume cannabis within 3 hrs of driving are nearly twice as likely to cause a vehicle collision compared to those who are not under the influence of cannabis. The points in the British Medical Journal’s article are that cannabis typically causes drivers to float in the lane and poor control in turns and on curves.

Cannabis intoxication also causes impaired visual tracking, inattention, reaction time, short-term memory loss, hand-eye coordination, changes in the perception of time and judgement of distance. The conclusion of most scientific studies is that Marijuana is a drug that impacts the nervous system.  Your conclusion should be that you will make mistakes driving drunk or high. The potential for killing someone is not worth the buzz.

BAC = 0.03%

  • Euphoria
  • Overall improvement in mood, increased self-confidence
  • Increased sociability

BAC = 0.06%

  • Impaired judgment
  • Poor responses to emergencies or multiple demands
  • Impaired coordination

At this level of alcohol in your body, you are dangerous if you get behind the steering wheel of a vehicle. You may feel fine that way, BUT you are not.

BAC = 0.08% – 0.10%

  • Impaired judgment
  • Lethargy
  • Blurred vision
  • Sedation
  • Delayed reactions
  • Balance difficulty
  • Impaired memory and comprehension
  • Impaired muscle coordination

Driving Drunk on Drugs

Just because medication is legal does not mean that they are safe to use when driving.  Next time you see a medication commercial on TV, listen to the side effects.  Side effects include sleepiness, blurred vision, dizziness, slowed thinking, diminished coordination, fainting, trouble focusing, impotence and death. Prescription and over-the-counter medications are not M&Ms.  Many have a very significant impact on the central nervous system.

Before you ever operate a motor vehicle or any other complex machinery, be sure to know what effect the medication has upon you.  For some medications such as pain medication, you want to wait at least four hours before you ever get into the driver seat and even then you want to know that you have the ability to safely handle the vehicle in traffic. Let’s talk about some of the effects differ medications can have upon you.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs can cost a life… yours or someone else.  On average, more than 10,000  family and friends die each year directly related to impaired driving. The question you have to ask yourself, seriously ask yourself, do you think the risk of drinking and driving is worth attending an online dui class or the pain and expense it will cost if you’re involved in a crash?