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Studies Find that Most Designated Drivers Have Been Drinking

Steve Wagner

Majority of Designated Drivers Have Been Drinking, Research Shows

Several national surveys of drivers have found that passengers think it’s just fine for the designated driver to have a few drinks, as long as the driver’s blood alcohol level remains below the legal limit or they seem well enough to drive. Those are frightening conclusions since research on drinking and driving shows that most people feel the effects caused by alcohol much earlier than they believe. In fact, studies from the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs have found driving skills become impaired with a blood alcohol level of as low as 0.02 percent — much lower than legal limit here in Indiana.

When You Pledge To Take the Wheel, Stay Sober

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, almost 29 people in the United States die in alcohol-impaired vehicle crashes every day. And although drunk-driving fatalities have fallen by a third in the last three decades, drunk-driving crashes claim more than 10,000 lives per year. In Marion County alone, there is a drastic rise of alcohol infused crashes, with Indianapolis home to the majority.

It doesn’t take a lot for the effects of alcohol to impact driving and decision-making skills. In fact, a standard drink is equal to 14.0 grams (0.6 ounces) of pure alcohol. Generally, this amount is found in:

  • 12-ounces of beer (5% alcohol content)
  • 8-ounces of malt liquor (7% alcohol content)
  • 5-ounces of wine (12% alcohol content)
  • 1.5-ounces or a “shot” of 80-proof (40% alcohol content) distilled spirits or liquor (e.g., gin, rum, vodka, whiskey)

If you agree to stay sober and be the safe ride for others, remember that even one drink will break that pledge and put everyone on the road at risk of serious injury or being involved in a tragic accident. Refresh yourself on the consequences of driving drunk. If you have been in a crash and arrested for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, you will be handcuffed and taken to the police station. Your car and your person will be searched and the car will be towed at your expense. You will be asked to take a certified breath test. If you refuse, your license will automatically be suspended for one year via the implied consent law IC 9-30-6-1. If you take a breath test and it shows that your blood alcohol content is .08 percent or more, your driver’s license will be suspended for a minimum of 30 days. To be released from jail, bail will have to be posted depending on your accident circumstances.

If you are the designated driver and decide to start drinking, speak up and plan for alternative transportation for your group like a cab or use a ride sharing service at the end of your night instead.

Drunk Drivers Must Be Held Accountable

If you or a loved one were injured as the result of the poor decisions of a negligent driver who was drunk, the car accident attorneys at Wagner Reese can assist you in pursuing the compensation you deserve. There is no risk, as we never collect any kind of fee unless your case is settled or won. Contact us today at (888) 204-8440 to schedule a free consultation.


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