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How “buzzed” driving is drunk driving

December 12, 2012 by Steven M. Gursten

Learn about  BAC levels that constitute drunk and buzzed driving

Many people still think that it’s okay to drive if they just are “buzzed.” They differentiate in their minds between having a couple drinks and being drunk.  It they have a “buzz,” then they think  it’s still okay to drive home.

This is a horrible misconception. Not only is buzzed driving unsafe, it’s illegal.

As an auto accident lawyer, I’ve personally seen the devastating consequences of car crashes after a driver has “just a drink or two.”   And the science is very clear that just a few drinks and driving with a “buzz” significantly impairs your ability for good driving judgment, as well as your ability to perceive and react behind the wheel.

Today marks the start of the National  Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) drunk driving prevention campaign. The heart of this campaign is to educate the public that buzzed driving is  considered drunk driving.

According to the NHTSA, 32,885 people were killed in auto accidents in 2010. Of those fatalities, 31% (10,228) involved alcohol-impaired drivers.

Data also shows that 70% of alcohol-impaired driving fatalities occurred when the driver’s blood alcohol concentration was .15 grams per deciliter or higher.

BAC levels and penalties for drunk driving in Michigan

Getting caught for drunk driving can also result in arrest, jail time, loss of driving privileges, higher insurance rates, lost time at work, court costs, fines and many other unwanted consequences.

Last week, I wrote a safety blog about National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month with information about laws and penalties for drunk driving in Michigan.

Remember, in Michigan, it’s illegal to drive with a bodily alcohol content of 0.08 or more. This crime is one of the driving while intoxicated offenses.

And if you’re a teenager, it’s illegal to drive with a bodily alcohol content of 0.02 or more.

So a few sips to a couple of beers could really get you into some serious trouble.

Here’s more information on Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving.

When you drink and drive, you’re putting your life and the lives of others at risk. Please be responsible, and don’t let your holiday celebrations end in tragedy.

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