Drunk Driving Awareness: Risks and Consequences

Alcohol misuse is among the top three leading preventable causes of death in the United States. Alcoholics Anonymous Carolina estimated a total of 266,000 South Carolinians struggle with alcohol misuse or have an Alcohol Use Disorder.

With high school prom season beginning in the coming weeks, we want you to be aware of the life-altering dangers that come with driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

FACTS:

  • 1 American dies every 50 minutes in a drunk driving accident. -CDC
  • $44 billion is spent nation-wide on drunk driving accidents. -CDC
  • Drunk-driving crashes are still claiming more than 10,000 lives per year. -CDC
  • In South Carolina, it is considered illegal to drive a vehicle if your blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.08% or higher. -SCDPS
  • 300 South Carolinians die each year as a result of impaired driving. -SCDPS

How do substances affect one’s ability to drive?

  • Impairs reasoning skills and muscle coordination
  • Effects concentration and causes short-term memory loss
  • Loss of speed control
  • Reduces information processing capability
  • As blood alcohol content increases these effects worsen

How can you prevent drunk or drugged driving?

  • If you plan on drinking, never plan on driving
  • If you are taking medications, check the label to make sure it is safe to drive while using them
  • Arrange a safe ride home
  • Utilize today’s progressive ridesharing technology and have apps like Uber or Lyft downloaded to your phone as an additional option for getting home
  • If you know someone has been drinking, offer to take their keys and help them find a safe ride home
  • Concerned drivers can dial *47 in South Carolina to report a driver that they believe may be impaired

What are the consequences for a DUI in South Carolina?

  • The penalties for a DUI will vary depending on the severity of the offense, as well as the number of times one has committed the crime over the past 10 years
  • First-time offenders may have their license suspended for up to 6 months, but this penalty takes on indefinite status for second-time offenders
  • A minimum $100 license reinstatement fee is also required after your suspension is complete
  • If charged with a DUI, you will be required to complete an instructive course approved by the South Carolina Department of Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Services (DAODAS)

How can the ADSAP program at LRADAC help?

  • As a DAODAS approved course, the South Carolina Alcohol Drug Safety Action Program is a mandatory statewide education and treatment program designed to lower risk for individuals who are convicted of Driving Under the Influence (DUI) or individuals whose licenses have been suspended
  • Clients will learn lessons on the risks involved with alcohol use, especially as they pertain to driving
  • Participants will gain the necessary awareness and understanding of use patterns while obtaining the skills needed to change those patterns that may be putting them at risk of a future DUI charge.

Visit https://lradac.org/adsap/ or call (803) 726-9300 for more information about the program. If you are someone you love is struggling with alcohol misuse, call us today (803) 726-9300.

LRADAC is the designated alcohol abuse and drug abuse authority for Lexington and Richland Counties of South Carolina. The public, not-for-profit agency offers a wide array of prevention, intervention and treatment programs in locations convenient to residents of both counties. The agency has a budget of approximately $10 million and serves more than 5,000 clients per year.