Driving under the influence is unacceptable

Published 7:03 pm Monday, December 14, 2015

State law enforcement kicked off its Booze It & Lose It campaign on Friday in an effort to crack down on drunk drivers.

Created in 1994, Booze It & Lose It is meant to raise awareness about the dangers and legal consequences of drunk driving, as well as prevent some of those results from happening, according to the Governor’s Highway Safety Program website.

This year, almost 340 people have lost their lives in alcohol-related accidents, the Safety Program reports.

State law prohibits any type of alcohol use for people under 21 years of age, and those who are old enough cannot legally drive with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of more than 0.08 percent.

Consequences of driving under the influence can range from fines to jail time, and even death in the event of an accident. Law enforcement will be out patrolling the roads and forming checkpoints to keep drunk drivers off the road, as well as keep other drivers safe.

In light of Booze It & Lose It, it’s important to remember how irresponsible it is to get behind the wheel after drinking. Not only could one’s own life be put at risk, but also the other drivers who are driving in one’s proximity.

Even if one feels as though he or she is sober enough to drive, never take the chance. It is always better to be safe than sorry. To be proactive about a night of drinking, ask a friend to hold oneself accountable after the party is over or designate a friend to stay sober to drive home. Better yet, if one is hosting a party with alcohol, make it a rule that all guests must give up their keys and prepare to provide them with sleeping arrangements.

Although law enforcement is placing extra emphasis on drunk driving now, this should be considered a year-round concern and always taken seriously. The consequences of drunk driving are 100-percent preventable, and ultimately, it’s just unacceptable to take the risk.