The average impaired driver will operate a vehicle 70 times before they are arrested. 70 chances to injure or kill themselves or someone else.
The Key Human Factors associated with the decision to Drive Drunk include:
A recent study published in Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology found that when people have been drinking, they feel sober before the brain and the body start acting drunk. This means that people might get behind the wheel and drive drunk because they think they have sobered up enough to drive. In reality, they are impaired both mentally and physically and do not think of the negative affects driving under the influence. The consequences of getting convicted of a DUI or DWI are outstanding fines, jail time, community service, and even having to attend a DUI school for an in class or online DUI course. These courses start at 8 hours and can go up to 72 hours and just keep increasing in cost. But people do not think about the consequences, time and money, one mistake will make.
The Intentional Drunk Driver’s Attitude
- Many drivers view driving as a human right or entitlement rather than a privilege.
- Drivers often believe that they are immune to the effects of alcohol or drugs.
- Young adults are impulsive which is increased with alcohol.
- Driving is viewed as a source of excitement rather than transportation.
- Social pressure to be accepted, cool and unafraid.
- A bulletproof mentality… laws are written for other guy. Rules do not apply to me.
Often a person who would normally not drive drunk gets caught up in their emotions and doesn’t care what happens to them or others anymore. A bullet proof attitude. Bad things happen to other people… not to me.
But, what happens when our assumptions meet reality face to face? What are the odds?
The 1.4 million U.S. drivers arrested for DUI each year is equal to the entire population of Hawaii.
Some jobs require that an employer be notified if an employee has a DUI on their record. Any career which requires you to have a commercial driver’s license requires notification
to the employer within 30 days.
Also, here are a few occupations that fall into the category of your employer being notified of a DUI:
- Truck Drivers Pilots
- Chauffeurs Military Personnel
- Bus Drivers Jobs w/ Security Clearance
- Taxi Drivers Some Delivery Drivers
- Train Engineers
- School Teachers
More than a few employers will not or cannot hire a person if they have a DUI arrest and conviction. For example, if you are trying to get a management position at a Pizza Hut, you will have to go through a long process to get hired or may not even get the position. At Pizza Hut, you need to be able to operate a vehicle to deposit money from the safe into a bank, and they do not allow or ir is very rare that they let people who have a DUI on their record become a manager. Even if you have paid all the fines, completed jail time, and even finished your in class or online DUI course, you still will have trouble becoming management or getting a job anywhere else.
You will be required to notify future employers of your DUI if their application form requests information on previous arrests. Background checks done by prospective employers are likely to show your DUI conviction. Any jobs which require driving will cause notification from the insurance company of your DUI charges when the new employer adds you to their policy.
As you know, the costs of driving drunk is very expensive. Not just the thousands of $$$ you will spend over several years if you are arrested DUI, but the significant restrictions placed on your life, employment and family, especially when you need to dedicate hours in community service and with your online DUI class.
And if you injure or kill someone while holding onto the steering wheel… your freedom will be sacrificed. Knowing these risks, why would someone choose to drive drunk? Lets look at what motivates a person to drive under the influence.
Although both young and older adults are reasonably aware of many of the consequences of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, they have no fear of being arrested until…
Fear only becomes reality when the handcuffs are tightened on their wrists and they are sitting alone in the back of a police car… with time to think. If you know anyone that has recently convicted of a first offence DUI and needs a DUI School, we provide an affordable 8 hour online DUI class that can be taken on any mobile device, which will save time and money in the long run.
90% of all drunk driving happens after drinking with family, friends, and coworkers. That said, there is almost always somebody around who could be part of the solution, but doesn’t. If you want to learn more about not letting your friends drink and drive, check out our article here, for tips on saying no or finding other options.
Society Responds Harshly
Society makes the cost of an arrest and conviction for DUI so expensive, time consuming and uncomfortable that most people do not want to risk a second arrest.
Nationally, over a five year time frame, only 20% of those convicted of a 1st DUI are re-arrested a 2nd time. So, the harshness of a 1st time DUI arrest experience discourages the 80% from ever wanting to deal with the legal system again.
Society Responds Proactively
Most communities in the U.S. follow the same basic approach to discourage drunk driving.
- Mandatory alcohol and drug education following an arrest such as an online DUI school.
- Zero tolerance for anyone under the age of 21.
- Immediate loss of a Driver’s License.
- School based education which can be taken in person or online.
- Community based education.
These are the current tools in use to proactively prevent DUI fatalities, injuries and legal entanglements.
Unfortunately, recent research suggests that high risk young adults are unaffected by the fear of an arrest. It unfortunately takes an arrest experience to have a long term impact on young adult drunk drivers.
One way that society has responded to drunk driving are Sobriety Checkpoints. These are locations set up to identify intoxicated drivers. These checkpoints have been documented to work as they have been found to consistently reduce alcohol related crashes by 9%. Simply put, 1 in 10 potentially fatal or injury crashes were prevented.
Darwin Award Winner
The Darwin Awards salute the improvement of the human genome by honoring those who accidentally remove themselves from it.
Among motorcyclists killed in fatal crashes in 2010, 28% had a BAC of greater than 0.08%. Another 7 to 10% had some level of alcohol in their system when they died. Think about riding a bicycle. Most legally intoxicated people wouldn’t make it 10 feet. Considering that the only thing separating a motorcyclist from asphalt or a fender is the clothes they’re wearing, why would anyone ride a motorcycle at freeway speeds or any speed when judgment and balance are impaired? Maybe because they’re drunk?
So you are going to a party and you know you will indulge in a few drinks. Put your keys in someone else’s hand before the first brew. Your ego should not be bruised when you plan to have fun and plan for someone else to drive you home afterward. One man’s party can easily become another man’s funeral.
Even if you are not impaired and someone else is, don’t let them drive away. Take their keys if they are insistent in sitting behind the wheel. Ask others to help discourage them. Wouldn’t you want someone to stop you from putting the keys in the ignition if you were drunk so you didn’t have to pay thousands of dollars of fines and deal with DUI or DWI classes? How would you feel if they or someone else died in a crash when you could have stopped them?
If you’re hosting a party where alcohol will be served, remind your guests to plan ahead and designate a sober driver; offer alcohol-free beverages an hour before the end of the party and make sure all guests leave with a sober driver. You could be held legally responsible if your guest drives away drunk and kills someone.