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Drunk Driving In America

Drunk driving remains one of the prominent issues in America, reflected by the increased number of incidents taking place in the country. The main argument emphasizes adopting laws and taking adequate measures that could prevent society from repercussions of drunk driving. The facts provided by the US Department of Transportation depict that people on roads are less safe due to drunk driving. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) identifies drunk driving as a confirmed cause of road accidents.

The agency reported in 2009 that at least 30 people die due to alcohol collisions each day, which constitutes yearly deaths of 11,000 people. The severity of the issue exhibits the need to control the issue and remove drunk driving. The possible solutions to overcome the problem of drunk driving include strict laws, ignition interlocking mechanisms, educating offenders, and providing alternatives.

Strict driving laws are vital for controlling the problem of drunk driving. The argument emphasizes the implementation of strict laws that prohibit citizens from driving during intoxication. Facts state that preemptive regulations are more useful in eliminating the possibility of drunk driving. Ex-post regulations significantly influence the fatality rates by a decline. NHTSA supports the claim as it states, “In 2016, there were 10,497 people killed in alcohol-impaired driving crashes, an average of 1 alcohol-impaired-driving fatality every 50 minutes” (NHTSA, 2016). The fact states that the constant rise in the number of road accidents exhibits the need for harsh laws. Strict laws, such as the legal drinking age, are effective in minimizing the percentage of people involved in drunk driving. The solution promotes the idea that more young people are vulnerable to alcohol driving. Yin, Wu, and Chang (2013) identify the positive role of minimum legal age by mentioning that setting a legal age declined the number of incidents.

As strict laws decrease the rate of fatalities, the state must impose them to protect the lives of the masses. The claim suggests that the lives of people on roads will be safer when the state implements harsh laws. The law of Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) suggests limiting the alcohol concentration. The solution relies on the evidence that “lowering the BAC from 0.10 to 0.08 reduced alcohol-related fatalities by 5% to 16%, saving approximately 400 lives per year”. The empirical evidence supports the argument for strict driving laws. The law of zero tolerance also strengthens the central argument as it identifies the positive implications. The zero-tolerance laws and open container laws reduce alcohol-related fatalities. The claims presented in the analysis reveal that strict driving laws prevent road accidents due to enhanced safety (Ying, Wu, & Chang, 2013).

The adoption of ignition interlocks for drunk drivers proposes a valid solution to deal with the problem of drunk driving. The claim emphasizes eliminating leniency policies that do not impose the situation on first-timers. The ignition interlock is an influential strategy to discourage drivers from driving when they are intoxicated. The interlock mechanisms analyze drivers’ breaths when they start driving, which helps identify risky drivers. The interlock assesses the breath, and if the driver exceeds the blood alcohol limit, the car does not start. The suggestion states, “Limited usage is thought to result from low DWI conviction rates, state policies restricting interlocks to repeat DWI offenders, and a preference among offenders to have their license suspended” (Carter, Flannagan, Bingham, & Cunningham, 2015). The fact indicates that interlocking mechanisms are effective for controlling drunk driving as they allow the transportation department to detain the driving licenses of drivers posing risks of drunk driving. The claim emphasizes eliminating the opportunities for alcohol-impaired driving.

Educating alcohol-impaired drivers minimizes the possibility of recidivism. After the identification of drunk drivers, the state and the transportation authorities need to educate them about the adversities of drunk driving. Their engagement in programs such as overcoming a problem of alcohol and counseling are effective in changing their driving behaviors. The law targets offenders who engage in drunk driving multiple times but ignore first-time offenders. The claim states, “empirical evidence suggesting that many so-called first-time alcohol-impaired drivers are problem drinkers16 and are unlikely to be reformed through educational interventions” (Rauch, Zador, Ahlin, Howard, Frissell, & G. Doug Duncan, 2010). The claim stresses that educating first-time offenders eliminates the risks of recidivism. Through education programs on driving, there are possibilities of eliminating their risky driving behaviors.

Designated driver services is another solution that eliminates the risks of drunk driving. The claim suggests that the state must ban drunk driving, and after identification of such drivers, they must be offered designated driver programs. The alternative to drunk driving is designated driver service. The claim states, “people who identified themselves as designated drivers and ensured that they abstained from alcohol use and drove their parties from the drinking establishment” (Ditter, Elder, Shults, & Sleet, 2005). The facts support the claim that designated driving minimizes the risks of alcohol-impaired driving. The adoption of the strategy provides an efficient solution against road accidents and fatalities.

The argument stresses the implementation of strict laws that eliminate the possibility of drunk driving. Data obtained from the Department of Transportation reveals that alcohol-impaired driving poses a high risk of road accidents, threatening the lives of other citizens. Prevention of drunk driving provides an efficient solution against the adversities faced by fellow drivers and pedestrians. Strict laws offered by the argument include zero tolerance, setting age limits, and blood alcohol consumption. Interlocking mechanisms and educational programs are useful in removing drunk driving.

References

Ying, Y.-H., Wu, C.-C., & Chang, K. (2013). The Effectiveness of Drinking and Driving Policies for Different Alcohol-Related Fatalities: A Quantile Regression Analysis. Int J Environ Res Public Health, 10 (10).

Carter, P. M., Flannagan, C. A., Bingham, C. R., & Cunningham, R. M. (2015). Modeling the Injury Prevention Impact of Mandatory Alcohol Ignition Interlock Installation in All New US Vehicles. Am J Public Health, 105 (5), 028–1035.

Ditter, S. M., Elder, R. W., Shults, R. A., & Sleet, D. A. (2005). The effectiveness of Designated Driver Programs for Reducing Alcohol-Impaired Driving. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 28 (5).

NHTSA. (2016). Alcohol-Impaired Driving. Retrieved 04 01, 2018, from https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812450

Rauch, W. J., Zador, P. L., Ahlin, E. M., Howard, J. M., Frissell, K. C., & G. Doug Duncan. (2010). Risk of Alcohol-Impaired Driving Recidivism Among First Offenders and Multiple Offenders. Am J Public Health, 100 (5), 919–924.

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