How Bad Is Drunk Driving?

Not only is drunk driving illegal in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, but the behavior kills approximately 10,000 people each year. That’s 28 people every day and one person every 52 minutes. Even if you don’t get arrested or pulled over, you could cause a car accident that injures or kills someone else.

Simply put, drunk driving is really bad, and the consequences are never worth it.

What Is Drunk Driving?

Legally speaking, drunk driving is operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 grams of alcohol per deciliter of blood. For people with commercial driver’s licenses, the limit is .04 grams of alcohol per deciliter of blood. Driving under the influence is illegal in all 50 states, including Georgia. Still, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) explains that “even a small amount of alcohol can affect driving ability,” so you should find another way home after any amount of drinking.

With cabs, rideshare services, designated drivers, and public transportation, there is always another option.

How Alcohol Affects Your Driving

People drink alcohol because it helps them relax and have fun. Unfortunately, the way alcohol affects your body decreases your driving ability at a BAC as low as .02 g/dL. Alcohol can have the following effects on your driving abilities:

  • Decline in visual functions
  • Decreased ability to multitask
  • Reduced coordination
  • Difficulty steering
  • Reduced reaction time
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Short-term memory loss
  • Inability to control your speed
  • Impaired perception
  • Trouble maintaining lane position
  • Inability to brake appropriately
  • Far less muscle control than normal
  • Slowed thinking
  • And more

You probably wouldn’t drive a car with a broken leg or a raging headache, so don’t drive a car while you’re under the influence. If you’re worried about making a judgment call while you’re at the bar, simply leave your car at home or find another way home. You can also ask a trusted friend or family member to hold onto your keys, or better yet, be your designated driver.

What Are the Consequences of Drunk Driving?

In Georgia, drunk drivers face fines, jail time, and public service. Additionally, the state can suspend or revoke your license. Worse still, driving under the influence could cause an accident that injures or kills someone.

Most DUIs are misdemeanor offenses, but these crimes can easily become felonies, especially if you have multiple convictions or cause a serious accident. Even on a first offense, you may have to spend 24 hours in jail, and more serious crimes can lead to one year or more in prison.

Additionally, drunk drivers can face civil consequences from people they hurt via personal injury lawsuits.

What to Do After a Drunk Driving Incident

If you have been injured by a drunk driver in Georgia, seek medical treatment and contact an attorney to discuss your options for recovery.

If you have made a mistake and driven under the influence or face DUI charges, you will also need to contact a lawyer.

At Busch, Reed, Jones & Leeper, P.C., we provide honest, value-driven representation in all areas of the law. We have more than 150 years of combined experience, and we can help you achieve the most favorable results in your case.

Whether you need to recover compensation for medical bills and other losses after being injured or bereaved by a drunk driver or handle DUI charges, we can help.

Become our top priority by calling us at (770) 629-0154 or contacting us online today.