Preventing Drunk Driving

August 17, 2023
Preventing drunk driving safety training image

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration started the campaign “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” to prevent drunk driving. One person is killed about every 39 minutes in a drunk-driving crash, totaling more than 13,000 lives lost each year.

Drivers are making riskier decisions when they're behind the wheel. In 2020, 11,654 people died in drunk-driving crashes — a 14% increase from 2019.

During the Labor Day holiday period, we typically see an increase in drunk-driving deaths — and that's why you'll likely see more law enforcement on the roads. There were 530 traffic crash deaths during Labor Day weekend in 2020. 46% of these crashes involved drivers who had been drinking, while 38% involved a drunk driver.

As a response to this, the National “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign, which runs from August 17-September 5, aims to educate people about the dangers and consequences of driving drunk.

The effects of alcohol:

  • Blood alcohol concentration of .02 – Decline in visual functions, decline in ability to perform two tasks at the same time
  • Blood alcohol concentration of .05 – Reduced coordination, reduced ability to track moving objects, difficulty steering, reduced response to emergency driving situations
  • Blood alcohol concentration of .08 – Reduced concentration, short term memory loss, lack of speed control, reduced information processing capability, impaired perception
  • Blood alcohol concentration of .10 – Reduced ability to maintain lane position and brake appropriately
  • Blood alcohol concentration of .15 – Substantial impairment in vehicle control, attention to driving task, and in necessary visual and auditory information processing

Have a plan whether you're driving, riding, or hosting:

  • Before drinking, plan a safe and sober ride home
  • Don’t let someone get behind the wheel if they've been drinking
  • If you’re hosting a gathering, make sure all your guests have a sober ride home
  • If you see an impaired driver, call 911. And always wear your seat belt — it’s your best defense against impaired drivers

To learn more, visit:

Credit: United States Department of Transportation

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