Edward-Elmhurst Health asks in its Healthy Driven Blog, “Have you ever gotten behind the wheel after having a few drinks?” Each time you do, whether you admit it or not, you put your life and other people’s lives at risk. You may think the worst can’t happen, but it can. And one of these days, it could happen to you or someone you love.
December marks National Impaired Driving Prevention Month. This is fitting, since year after year around the holidays, hundreds of people lose their lives in impaired driving crashes.
Yet, it’s not just the holidays but all year long that we need to be responsible behind the wheel.
Every day, 28 people in this country die in alcohol-impaired driving crashes — that’s one person every 53 minutes, reports the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). About one-third of traffic deaths in the United States involve a drunk driver. These are all preventable tragedies.
We all know the age-old saying: don’t drink and drive. But today, impaired driving means more. It includes distracted driving, such as texting while driving, and something else that’s often overlooked — drugged driving.
Illegal drugs, prescription drugs, and even over-the-counter medications can be just as deadly on the road as alcohol. Recent research shows how prevalent drugged driving has become in the U.S. Both alcohol and drugs impair your ability to drive safely by affecting your judgment, concentration, perception, motor skills, and reaction time.
New and young drivers are the most at-risk for impaired driving-related crashes, as car crashes are the leading cause of death for teens, and about a quarter involve an underage drinking driver. Learn signs your teen may be abusing alcohol. Read more