Alcohol can have a significant impact on your risk of being involved in a car accident. According to studies, the risk of being involved in an accident if your blood alcohol is at the legal limit 0.08% is 2.5 – 11 times that of a sober driver. A 2001 University of Chicago analysis suggested that the increased risk of being in a car accident when drunk meant that the fair penalty for drunk drivers—the one which made them bear the true cost of their behavior—would be $8000 (more than $10,000 in current dollars).
The impact of alcohol on your accident risk becomes fairly clear when you look at the impact of alcohol on your body’s system. First, alcohol impairs your muscle control, starting with many of your smallest muscles, such as the ones that help your eyes focus on and track objects. This can make it harder for you to recognize dangers on the road.
Alcohol also impairs your judgment, so once you recognize a potential hazard, your decisions about how to respond are more likely to be incorrect. Because you are feeling more in control than you truly are, you are more likely to try to attempt maneuvers that you cannot complete.
Impaired muscle control also means that you are less likely to be able to safely complete maneuvers of even minor difficulty. These performance errors also make it much more likely that you will get in an accident.
Overall, the dangers of driving while impaired are not justified, and can lead to deadly accidents.
If you have been injured or lost a loved one due to a drunk driving accident, you may be able to get compensation for your injury or loss.