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Top Myths About Drinking and Driving

By August 26, 2010

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Many young drivers decide to drink and drive because they have some misconceptions about alcohol impairment and how it affects driving skills and reaction times. There are some myths surrounding drinking and driving that many young people, especially males, believe.

Too many of these younger driver think it's okay to drink and drive and they make excuses for why it's alright.

The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) launched a campaign \aimed at reducing drinking and driving. As a part of that campaign, the ICBC released a statement listing the top five myths about drunk driving.

The ICBC explains why what many people believe about drinking and driving is incorrect and why these myths can be dangerous for young men. The following is the ICBC news release:

  1. I can hold my booze: Too many guys think drinking a six-pack of beer and then driving is OK, which is why 81 per cent of all impaired drivers in alcohol-related crashes are male. So guys, if you think driving drunk will impress the ladies, think again. Remember those pick-up lines you thought sounded slick but actually acted as repellent? Alcohol not only impairs your ability to score a date, it impairs your vision, concentration and ability to react to unexpected hazards on the road.

  2. I know that I'm sober enough to drive: While you may be able to see and walk without staggering after drinking a few beers the reality is you can't always tell when impairment kicks in - it actually starts with your first drink. Alcohol affects more than your vision and coordination. It affects your judgment, attention span, alertness, reaction time and ability to do more than one task at a time - vital things you need when you get behind the wheel.

  3. All I need is something to eat and I'll be fine: While having a burger with your beer is a good idea, a full stomach is not an effective defence against impaired driving. And no amount of coffee, cold showers or fresh air will sober you up either. The only cure is time. In fact, it takes about six hours for your body to eliminate all the alcohol from your body when you have a blood alcohol concentration of .08, the legal limit.

  4. I won't get caught: Police have stepped up roadchecks in recent years. Drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs face a range of penalties from 24-hour driving prohibitions and vehicle impoundments, 90-day administrative driving prohibitions to criminal charges, fines and jail time. On top of fines, convicted drinking drivers may also be required to attend an alcohol rehabilitation program and may have an alcohol interlock device installed in their vehicle to prevent them from starting or continuing to drive while impaired.

  5. I don't drink and drive but driving after a joint is fine: Numerous studies have shown that "stoned" drivers can be every bit as dangerous as drunk drivers. Depending on what you've smoked, swallowed or injected, drug impairment ranges from slowed reflexes, flawed depth perception to hallucinations and seizures. And if you've been mixing alcohol and drugs and are tired from partying all night, this combination can be even deadlier. New legislation now allows police to test drivers for drug impairment and charge those who refuse to provide blood, saliva or urine samples.

More About Drunk Driving:

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