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Cagle Law Firm
Attorney Zane Cagle

Posted on October 2nd, 2012,
by Zane Cagle

Encouraging News!!! Drunk Driving Down Among Teens According to CDC

Posted on October 2nd, 2012 by Zane Cagle

Drunk Driving Down Among Teens According to CDCAccording to a recent report from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, drunk driving among U.S teens feel 54 percent in the last two decades. Several studies consider the trend to be most influenced by laws to curb underage alcohol consumption and higher gas prices which kept more students off of the roads.

In 2011, about 10% of high school students reported drinking and driving compared to 22% in 1991.  Individuals between the age of 16-20 are 17 times more likely to die in a crash when their blood alcohol level is .08 percent-the legal limit in many states.

Driving among teens in general dropped from 2000-2010 as the proportion of high school seniors who didn’t get behind the wheel during an average week increased 22% to 15% according to the CDC.  This decreased of amount of time/teens behind the wheel in conjunction with compliance checks by retailers, and the legal age for drinking at 21, all contributed to the decline.

A decline in teen drunk driving is always a good statistic!  According to the president of the Irving, Texas-based, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, “Parental involvement is also very important for preventing drunk driving”

According to the report, teen alcohol consumption has dropped since the 1990’s.

It is great when community based efforts work!  Certainly the increase in awareness of the dangers of drunk driving have been critical for more strict compliance checks and laws as well as increased awareness and support for law enforcement. Not to be forgotten is the increased awareness among teens.  It would appear as if maybe more  teens are making the choice to not drink and drive. Certainly the efforts by SADD (Students Against Drunk Driving) and MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) raise awareness among teens and families.  When I was in high school, I did not see the presence of strong SADD and MADD groups—of course, that was in the early 90’s when teens were reporting drinking and driving at 22%. It seemed that every year, each senior class lost a young person in an alcohol and car related death, sometimes two.  That is a high school tradition that no one will miss.

Teens are by very definition, novice drivers which is why car insurance is higher for teen drivers.  Therefore, when teens add alcohol to driving or texting, the car can easily get away

It seems rarely we get to report anything positive in relation to teens and driving.  Part of the beauty of being a teenager is the feeling of invincibility………….it is one of the few times in one’s life that you truly feel invincible—–it is a great time!  It is always tragic when a life is cut short and the reality of our true human frailty is thrown in our faces.  As I have small children, I very much advocate for groups such as SADD and MADD because I believe they are great organizers of disseminating information and awareness.

The personal stories of these organization members are compelling and teens identify with peer’s personal stories—-we all do.  Relating personal stories is what I do as a trial attorney. I must discover my client’s personal story and an injury or accident is simply the initial way that I get to know them—the catalyst if you will. But an auto accident is not ever what defines a person/client, just as a drunk driving accident is not what defines a teen. Meaning that because a teen dies in a drunk driving accident, that is not their only story.  SADD and MADD members honor memories of individuals killed in alcohol related deaths by raising awareness in an effort to prevent other needless deaths.  SADD and MADD do this on a much grander scale than trail attorneys, even though we all do it one story at a time.  I applaud the collective community-based efforts of the great organizations that work tirelessly to prevent deaths and injuries due to alcohol.

If you have been injured in an auto accident involving a drunk driver, you need legal representation.  At The Cagle Law Firm, we believe that each of us must take responsibility for our actions, thus those who climb behind the wheel after drinking are making a negligent decision. When they are involved in an auto accident as a result of their alcohol consumption and injure others, they must be held responsible.  Accidents that are alcohol related are completely preventable. Call Zane T. Cagle of The Cagle Law Firm today for a free consultation 1(314) 276-1681

Lopatto, Elizabeth, (10/2/12) Teen Drunk Driving Falls on High Gas Prices, Less Alcohol Bloomberg Businessweek.