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Drinking and Driving: A Deadly Mix

Drinking and Driving: A Deadly Mix

Written by: Melissa Garza, NCHS ‘16

Drinking and Driving: A Deadly Mix Jan. 29, 2016 | Responsible Citizens | Each day, approximately 27 people in the United States will experience a fatal crash in a motor vehicle that involves an alcohol-impaired driver. Alcohol related crashes amount to one death every 51 minutes. The annual cost of alcohol-related crashes totals more than $59 billion.

In 2012, 29.1 million people admitted to driving under the influence of alcohol. This number exceeds the population of Texas.


Car crashes lead the cause of death for teens, and about 25% of those crashes involved an underage drinking driver. Teens in high school influence themselves to drinking, leading to the poor decision of driving drunk.


Not only should one avoid driving post consuming alcohol, but also under the influence of drugs. Drugs can affect the brain in many ways depending on the drug. When misused, prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, and illegal drugs may harm perception, judgment, memory, and motor skills.


Driving requires a person’s attentiveness and the ability to make quick decisions on the road and to react to changes in the environment. When drinking alcohol or using drugs, the part of the brain, named the frontal lobes that functions specifically for rationing and thinking does not function to its full potential as when sober.


Alcohol acts as a depressant due to the reaction it inflicts on the brain. Alcohol limits the functions of the central nervous system, eventually slowing it down. This means that normal brain function delays, and a person cannot react or perform normally.


Alcohol affects a person’s cognitive skills. Cognitive skills allow one to process information, and with these skills diminished, one may react late when driving an automobile. Alcohol also affects hand-eye coordination, commonly referred to as psycho-motor skills.


Alcohol, drugs and driving simply do not go together. One should avoid driving a vehicle when under the influence.


Please do not drink and drive.


(Source: Eagle Times Bulletin