Many of you know that when it’s finally time to send your children off to high school, you can only worry about the pressures they will face with their peers, Whether it be drugs, sex, or cheating on a test. I know from experience in my high school years that there are many horrible situations you can put yourself into because you were pressured by another student. A big problem lately is, under age drinking and driving. Now when i was in high school, I tried to stay away from that scene, but many kids that were my friends got sucked into that lifestyle, and eventually faced major consequences. Not only is drinking and driving stupid, but it’s also very deadly. Every 39 minutes someone is killed by a drunk driver. 37% of traffic fatalities are cause by drunk driving.
I believe this matter is very important, and all parents should sit down with there kids and discuss the dangers of drunk driving. You could save a child’s life, you could save your child’s life.
I have gathered some facts and statistics regarding under age drunk driving.
In 2006, the average age at first alcohol use among recent initiates aged 12 to 49 was 16.6 years. This is earlier than any other drug except inhalants.
In 2006, an estimated 15,827 people died in alcohol-related traffic crashes—an average of one every 33 minutes. These deaths constitute 37 percent of the 42,532 total traffic fatalities. Of these, 13,470 involved a driver with an illegal BAC (.08 or greater). On average someone is killed by a drunk driver every 39 minutes.
An early age of drinking onset is associated with alcohol-related violence not only among persons under age 21 but among adults as well.
Underage alcohol use is more likely to kill young people than all illegal drugs combined.
The total cost attributable to the consequences of underage drinking was $61.9 billion per year in 2001 dollars. This is $5.4 billion in medical costs, $14.9 billion in work loss and other resource costs, and $41.6 billion in lost quality of life.
In 2007, the U.S. Surgeon General estimates that approximately 5,000 persons under age 21 die from alcohol-related injuries involving underage drinking each year.
Underage drinkers are susceptible to immediate consequences of alcohol use, including blackouts, hangovers, and alcohol poisoning and are at elevated risk of neurodegeneration (particularly in regions of the brain responsible for learning and memory), impairments in functional brain activity, and the appearance of neurocognitive defects. Heavy episodic or binge drinking impairs study hairs and erodes the development of transitional skills to adulthood.
People who begin drinking before age 14 are seven times more likely than those who began drinking after age 21 to report being in a motor vehicle crash because of their drinking.
So please remember, that if you or a loved one have been drinking, don’t get in the car. Call a sober friend or family member to pick you up. It could save a life.
Attorney Moseley Collins has helped many people injured by drunk drivers. He was the founding President of the Santa Clara County chapter of MADD.
If you or a loved has been injured or killed by a drunk driver you have a claim for personal injury or wrongful death. It is vital that you find an experienced attorney to fight for your rights as a victim. So many times people incur huge bills after an accident like this.
Moseley Collins is a Sacramento personal injury lawyer, specializing in major injury cases, including people injured or killed by drunk drivers.