Drinking and Driving

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One night my sister was driving home from her school dance when she was hit by an oncoming vehicle. The driver of the other car was a drunk seventeen year old. My sister’s car flipped once and wrapped around a telephone pole. By the time the ambulance came, my sister already passed away. I arrived shortly after the ambulance, when I saw her limp body I wanted to cry, but nothing came. She was picked up as if she was as light as a feather. While she was lying in the ambulance truck, I stood in silence next to my mom. Words couldn’t explain the way I felt that dark, gloomy night. Now, every year, our whole family goes to that very telephone pole, and we hang a floral wreath on it in her honor. The consequences of drunk driving are serious, but there are numerous solutions, and ways children and adults can do to protect themselves.

The consequences do not only affect the drunk driver. Driving while under the influence leads to multiple legal punishments. Automatic license revocation seems to be the most effective way to reduce drunk driving (Hanson 2). Other penalties for drinking and driving stated by Hanson include “license suspension, impounding, confiscated vehicle plates, fines or jail for drunk driving” (2). Can you imagine taking someone else’s life? Law enforced consequences are not the only punishments you encounter when you drink and drive. For instance, as said by Driven Magazine, “those who are injured and who must live the rest of their lives with pain, disability, isolation, medical bills or the loss of loved ones” (2). If you put someone and their family through that much torture, you also have to live with that your whole life.

Since drinking and driving is such a serious problem, there has to be solutions to try and improve the situation. It is difficult to come up with reasonable solutions for such an important problem. One of the most effective approaches, in my opinion, is “restricting nighttime driving by young people” (Hanson 3). By putting this solution into action, which means less chance for underage drinkers to get injured or killed. Another smart answer to the problem is “marking the license plate to indicate ownership in the family of someone whose driver’s license is suspended or revoked for alcohol offenses” (3). These solutions should be acknowledged by everyone as soon as possible, so that it is safer for people to drive.

With all the drunk drivers out there, it is crucial to take precautions when driving. Driving safely is like riding a bike, but by making the right choices to protect yourself you can remain unharmed. One of the most important things to do before getting ready to drive is to always wear a seat belt (Hanson 4). By wearing a seat belt, it decreases your chances of getting seriously injured. Also if you’re going to a party and you know there is going to be drinking, volunteer to be a designated driver (4). By having a designated driver your friends will not be driving drunk and that means less drunk drivers on the road. The most effective way to protect yourself mentioned by Hanson is “don’t drink and drive, and don’t ride with anyone who has had too much too drink” (4). Everyone deserves to drive, but not if they’re not going to drive safely. Driving is not a right, it’s a privilege. Always make smart choices when it comes to driving, so that you can stay safe.

Enforcing the consequences of drinking and driving makes finding solutions for it easier, and it makes it safer for people to be driving. Every year when the floral wreath is put on that telephone pole, I feel like I can still feel her presence there, and it makes me miss her even more. I always wonder why it had to be her killed in the car accident, and not the person who caused the crash. Is that even fair to her? Drinking and driving is a serious problem that needs to be resolved, so that no other families had to go through what mine did.





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