Each day, 29 people lose their lives in alcohol-impaired driving accidents. Alcohol and drugs are major contributors to car crashes, and driving under the influence is a serious problem that continues to rob families of their loved ones. Below are some essential facts on impaired driving that you should know.
What Constitutes Impaired Driving in California?
In California, it is illegal to drive under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of both. Under the California Vehicle Code Section 23152 VC drivers found to have committed this offense will face criminal charges and have their license taken away. However, not all drunk drivers are charged for drunk driving. The legal BAC threshold in California is 0.08 percent, which means that the percentage of alcohol in your bloodstream shouldn’t be equal to or greater than 0.8 percent. For commercial drivers, the limit is 0.4%.
Anyone under 21 years and those on DUI probation can be charged if found with any amount of alcohol in their system. If you are suspected to be driving under the influence of drugs, you are required to have a blood test. If it turns out positive, you will be in violation of the law. DUI laws apply to all drugs that cause impairment, including marijuana, cocaine, heroin, ecstasy, and over the counter prescription drugs. Drugged driving has swiftly turned into a national catastrophe as 12.8 million people drove under the influence of illicit drugs in 2017.
Dangers of Drunk and Drugged Driving
29% of all fatal car accidents are caused by alcohol. Any level of alcohol or drugs in your blood can weigh heavily on how your body operates. Key functions of your body, including the brain are affected, heightening the chances of causing a crash. Here are some areas that alcohol and drugs can affect.
When driving, there are many complexities that a driver encounters. To maneuver past these challenges and make sound decisions behind the wheel, one needs maximum concentration. Sadly, alcohol and drugs diminish your concentration level, which can cause you to miss important signs, warnings, and road markings.
- Reaction Time
The road has quick changing situations that need you to react quickly. A car in front may hit the breaks, a pedestrian may emerge from nowhere, or you may encounter a new warning sign. Alcohol slows your reflexes and prevents you from reacting on time, thus increasing the likelihood of causing a collision when drunk driving.
- Lack of Coordination
Multiple parts of the body need to work together when driving a car. When drunk or drugged, your eyes, hands, and feet may not be able to coordinate together. This is why one sway, finds trouble walking or standing up. When driving in such a state, you will be a threat to other road users, and you won’t manage to act swiftly when danger emerges.
To end the dangers associated with impaired driving, start by readjusting your life, and catch a ride when you are intoxicated. From there, you can educate your friends and family about the dangers of driving under the influence.