While Texas has the highest rate of drunk driving fatalities in the nation, we also have some of the toughest laws to prevent repeat offenses. Unfortunately, a driver can cause the death of an innocent person the very first time he ever drinks and drives. Understanding what can lead to impaired driving may prevent these senseless tragedies.
Don’t Drink and Drive
This statement has become somewhat of a cliché, but it bears repeating. Any amount of alcohol, especially for teens, women, and smaller people, can impair decision-making and reaction times. The legal limit for driving is a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 percent. On average, a 160-pound man will exceed this by drinking four beers in an hour, while a 140-pound woman will hit it after just three drinks. However, a study conducted 15 years ago by Texas A&M found significant driving impairment in people with a BAC of just .04 percent. Both men and women can reach .04 after just one or two drinks. It’s also important to note that you can be cited for DWI in Texas with a BAC under .08 if you are caught driving recklessly or have caused an accident.
How Drug Use Affects Driving
Less attention is paid to the effects of certain drugs on the ability to drive, but this is a growing problem across Texas. Marijuana has an effect on driving similar to alcohol, with slowed reaction times and impaired judgment. Drugs like cocaine or heroin can make drivers aggressive and reckless. Even over-the-counter cold medicines can make drivers dizzy and drowsy. If you use illegal drugs, do not get behind the wheel. If you are taking any medicine, read the label to determine if you should be driving.
Plan Ahead to Save Lives
If you plan to have a beer or a glass of wine with dinner at a restaurant, remember to give yourself plenty of time to process the alcohol before driving. If you know you may not stop at one drink, appoint a designated driver or take advantage of the flood of ride-sharing services now available everywhere to get home safely. You owe it to yourself and others on the road.
Call Button Law If You Are Injured by a Drunk Driver
No matter how many precautions you take to ensure you do not drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you could still be in danger on Texas roads because of another person’s bad decisions. If you are injured in a car crash and suspect the other driver was impaired, we can help ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Schedule your free consultation today.