Recently we learned a really great fact about drinking and driving: ignition interlock devices reduce DUI fatalities by 7%. With 28 states that currently have all-offender ignition interlock laws, we get to see the results of such hard work by lawmakers who enact these laws, and police who enforce them. In other news, we’ve recently learned that around 3% of people don’t think drinking and driving is such a bad thing, and they might be the ones who wrongly assume they’re okay to drive.
A recent survey by AAA reveals that not everyone is so sure that drinking and driving is dangerous, despite support for ignition interlock devices.
One in eight of the same group of people who don’t think drinking and driving is wrong also admitted to drinking and driving in the past year. In terms of DUI statistics, we know that by the time a drunk driver is arrested, they have already been drinking and driving an average of 80 times previously. If you do the math, that’s a lot of potential damage that can be done on our roads each day, and probably a factor in the higher rate of DUIs across the U.S. in 2016. Feeling “okay to drive” and actually being sober behind the wheel are two different things, entirely.
On the other hand, that same group of people who were surveyed by AAA did have an overwhelming support for ignition interlock devices as a consequence for drinking and driving. That may be a little “do as I say, not as I do,” but we completely agree with the sentiment. Maybe the survey occurred in Wisconsin, where a first-time DUI can be considered little more than a traffic incident, not a crime.
To be clear, drinking and driving is dangerous. It is a bad idea and it is a big deal. There are plenty of other ways to get home after drinking, all of which result in safe roads and happy endings for 100% of us all.