All You Need To Know About Impaired Driving In Houston

Ideas On Understanding A Houston Impaired Driving

Drivers in the 16 to 20 age range have a 1700% increased risk of dying in a crash when blood alcohol concentrations (BAC) are equal to or greater than .08%.

Driving Under The Influence Of Alcohol

Driving after consuming alcohol has many problems:

  • While young drivers are not as likely to drive after drinking as adults, their crash risk is significantly higher if they do. This trend is particularly prevalent at low to moderate BACs.
  • A survey in 2017 found that 16.5% of high school students over the age of 16 reported getting into a car within the last 30 days with a driver who had consumed alcohol.
  • Drivers are not as likely to use seat belts after drinking. And, 12% of young drivers between the ages of 16 and 17 involved in fatal crashes in 2016 have blood alcohol concentration greater than .084.
  • The majority of people killed in crashes related to alcohol use involving teen drivers are young driver themselves as well as their passengers.

The Zero Tolerance Law and further consequences of impaired driving under the influence of alcohol:

  • The zero-tolerance law means it is illegal for any driver under the age of 21 to drive with alcohol in their bloodstream.
  • Those who violate underage drinking laws can face a jail trip, revocation of their driver’s license, and a range of other expenses, such as court costs, attorney fees, and other fines.
  • A DUI conviction stays on a teen’s record, so it can cause humiliation, embarrassment, and potential loss of a college place, scholarship awards, employment eligibility, and more.
  • Local law enforcement has upped their efforts to catch offenders, so the chances of a conviction are higher.
  • A study conducted by the Department of Transportation in Texas found that first-time offenders could expect a DWI arrest and conviction to cost them $5,000 to $24,000.

Driving Under The Influence Of Drugs

  • According to NHTSA’s Fatality Analysis data from 2016, drugs were found in 43% of all drivers involved in crashes that caused fatal injuries, which is higher than the percentage of fatally injured drivers who had alcohol present.
  • The most commonly present drug was Marijuana by a large margin.
  • The complexity of drug-impaired driving is greater than alcohol-impaired driving for a range of reasons.

The Impacts Of Medications On Driving

  • Alprazolam (Niravam, Xanax XR, etc) is a commonly used anti-anxiety medication. It is a type of benzodiazepine and similar to drugs like diazepam (Valium), lorazepam (Ativan), clonazepam (Klonopin), and flurazepam (Dalmane). The side effects of these such medications can include vertigo, confusion, blurry vision, and drowsiness – all conditions that would make driving dangerous.
  • Dextroamphetamine (Adderall) and other amphetamines are used to treat ADHD (attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder) and narcolepsy. The drugs work to stimulate the brain by raising the levels of key neurotransmitters – norepinephrine and dopamine – in the system. While the meds can boost your ego, the greater danger is that Adderall can cause an increased heart rate, which puts drivers at risk of strokes or seizures.
  • MDMA (Methyl​enedioxy​methamphetamine, also known as ecstasy, can cause serve anxiety, decreased motor skills, and confusion. Using any type of drug can result in impairment of your ability to drive safely, and put you and others at a heightened risk of a car crash.
  • OxyContin(oxycodone) is a potent pain medication and a type of opioid. Painkillers are known to be some of the most commonly abused drugs among teenagers and are only overtaken by marijuana, tobacco, and alcohol. Not only are opioids extremely addictive, but they can also cause confusion, breathing difficulties, and nausea behind the wheel.
  • If you drive under the influence of marijuana, you can get a DUI and you place yourself at an increased risk of being involved in a car crash, as the drug can significantly impair reaction times, judgment, and motor coordination.

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