Free «Drunk Driving: Education and Prevention» Essay
Nowadays in the United States one person per hour average is killed in alcohol-related car accident. These statistics look shocking taking into account making legislation more severe in relation to drivers under the influence. Indeed, as the issue of drunk driving exposes the borderline between imprudence and crime can be very thin. In order to progress in solving this issue, legislature seems to be not enough. Attention has to be paid to the vulnerable categories of population and to those conditions when the number of alcohol related accidents grows. Society does not only should punish those who are guilty but also to educate the community about risk and responsibility. The so-called DUI programs should be further supported to improve the situation on highways and with human minds.
There is a little secret that young people seem to be the most risky category in terms of drunk driving. Indeed, there are several causes of young people’s prevalence in the share of alcohol-related accidents. One aspect is that the legal driving and legal drinking age are different in most states, which means that people tend to start driving earlier than they can start drinking. The minimal age when a person can legally start driving varies from fourteen years and three months to seventeen years, depending on a state, while legal drinking age is mostly twenty-one or at least eighteen. What happens as a result of this gap? Most typically there are two issues: alcohol-related accidents caused by people beneath the minimum legal age and those who are just above it (aged 21-24). As statistics show, “of people ages 21 to 24 involved in fatal crashes, 35 percent had a BAC above the legal limit” (Drunk Driving Accident Statistics). These are potential groups of risk, so the reasons for such kind of behavior should be explored. The most obvious answer is that those below drinking age consume alcohol because it is forbidden, while those aged 21-24 because it has just been allowed. Although it may sound ironic, but it refers to immaturity and the lack of proper education that one has to receive as a teenager before it is allowed to buy alcohol. Since, many people receive their driving licenses in middle teens, they do not always get proper knowledge about alcohol because they have non-alcohol years ahead. Though, it appears that there is no proper instruction about social modes and expectations looks similar to hiding the truth about the way children are conceived. Thus, education is necessary in order to prevent alcohol abuse and to make traffic safer.
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In the order to ensure proper social education to different categories of people, especially the young ones, the so-called DUI (driving under influence) programs are organized. DUI Foundation expert’s state: “People have developed an immunity to the horrifying photos of devastating car wrecks and other such educational material intended to scare us straight. It is our goal to break down that barrier of ignorance” (DUI Foundation). Indeed, this psychological aspect of the human mind seems to be one of the reasons why society is not as successful as it should be with fighting the issue of drunk driving. Shocking social adverts are a point of controversy, as they believed to be cruel by some people but approved as being effective by others. Thus, the debate is whether they promote violence by demonstrating explicit scenes of accidents or they prevent it by the kind of shocking motivation. The irony is that while the two parties argue about the use of shocking techniques to make the public behave properly, DUI experts claim that these methods are not working anymore! Hence, it should be pointed out that the governmental and non-governmental organization’s task is to educate about drunk driving and it should be not only assertive but creative as well, thinking of new methods of presenting the issue.
There are several methods that are used by DUI organizations, as well as several target audiences. Educating young people is one of the direction of their work, including legal guidance and information on potential health and behavior risks. Another approach is psychological support to both sides of the issue: those who suffer from an alcohol-induced car crash, and those who cause an accident because of alcohol abuse. Thus, it is important to point out that while dealing with the problem of drunk driving, one has to bear in mind a whole range of other related issues which either affect or are affected by the question in focus. Speaking about support groups organized by DUI foundation, they also are divided into two kinds: those meant for people who lost their close ones in an accident, and those who tries to cope with alcohol dependence.
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In conclusion, it is worth to say that in order to make progress in solving drunk driving issue, work has to be implemented in several dimensions. First of all, alcohol issues should be educated in alignment with driving license instruction, no matter how young a person is at the time. Secondly, the education of DUI organizations should be supported and reinforced by participation of wider circles of experts and volunteers. Finally, the initiative of these foundations on support groups both for victims and for guilty ones of accidents should be recognized and assisted. Overall, the issues of drunk driving are mostly about responsibility and maturity, so that’s why efforts of society should work in this direction.