The act of driving after drinking is a decision that people make every day in Virginia. This decision can be deadly for the driver and for other people on the road. Across the United States a drunk driver causes a drunk driving accident every two minutes. In Virginia, there are over 5,800 crashes each year caused by a drunk driver. Over 200 of those accidents cause a death. These deaths and injuries are entirely preventable.
As these statistics show, there are thousands of victims and families affected by drunk driving each year. By the time a drunk driver gets caught they may have driven drunk 80 times. Although the number of drunk driving accidents have decreased it is still an issues on the roads. Almost one out of three accidents on the road is caused by a drunk driver and one third of those accidents are caused by repeat offenders.
Suspending a driver's license is often not enough to stop a drunk driver from driving drunk again. Virginia now requires first time DWI offenders to install an ignition interlock device in their car. This device forces a driver to blow into a machine before the vehicle can be started and to continue to blow into the machine periodically while driving. This is in addition to a fine, license suspension for up to a year and being required to attend an alcohol education program.
The problems with drunk driving will not go away overnight. These drivers take mothers, fathers, daughters and sons away from their families each day. Holding these drivers responsible for their neglect is important in making sure they never hurt anyone else.
Source: Potsdam.edu, "Alcohol Problems and Solutions -- Driving," Accessed on Oct. 20, 2014