Driving under the influence poses serious threat to the society. Every year, drunk driving causes several injuries and fatalities not only in Missouri but the entire United States.
This brings to mind the case of a St. Louis driver who just got a nine-year prison sentence for causing two accidents within a period of eight months, leading to one death and severe injury to a young girl. He was found to be driving under the influence of marijuana and alcohol.
The main factors responsible for crashes such as the ones involving the St. Louis driver have been identified to be substance abuse and addiction. At The Hoffmann Law Firm, we feel that with April being the National Alcohol Awareness Month, it is relevant to discuss action that can be taken to reduce the amount of fatalities and injuries caused by driving under the influence in St. Louis.
Teenagers Driving Under the Influence
It has been observed that one effective means to curb the dangers of driving under influence is to raise awareness. Efforts to curtail driving under the influence should begin with teenagers. Why? Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) found in a survey that teenagers whose parents were against alcohol consumption by underage people were about 80 percent less likely to consume alcohol, compared to their peers whose parents do not hold similar view.
Teenagers who did not have their first drink before reaching 21 years of age have about an 80 percent less probability of becoming alcohol dependent in comparison to those who have their first drink before reaching the age of 15.
About 7,000 young people below the age of 16 take alcohol for the first time every day, according to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. This increases the risk of such young people becoming dependent on alcohol and putting their lives in grave danger on the road. Around 10,000 deaths are recorded annually as a result of auto crashes, with underage drinking responsible for about 4,700 deaths, according to MADD.
How to guard against drinking under the influence
The dangers of driving under the influence are very apparent. It important for everyone, especially those who are under the age of 21, to be educated about the dangers of drinking alcohol. Never get behind the wheel of a vehicle drunk. If you are of legal drinking age and plan on drinking, make arrangements to have a designated driver or have a taxi take you home. Do not allow a friend who has been drinking drive you home.
If you have been involved in an accident with someone who was driving under the influence in St. Louis, you deserve to be compensated for any resulting injuries and damages. Contact our law firm by calling (314) 361-4242 or by contacting us online and scheduling a free consultation.
photo credit: scragz via Flickr