The case of a chauffeur who pleaded guilty to drunk driving while transporting 23 Oswego High School students to their prom is enough to give us pause.
Our drunk driving accident lawyers in Chicago are familiar with all the advice given to teens by parents. One bit of wisdom for parents with the means is to consider a limo as a way to help ensure your teens are safely transported to and from prom or graduation. It can be an extra insurance policy for those parents who believe their teens will follow the rules in good faith, but don’t want to stake their child’s life on it or turn one of a teenager’s most joyous occasions into a sorrowful lesson learned.
NBC5 reports the 55-year-old Palos Hills driver pleaded guilty to one count of driving under the influence. Teens alarmed by his erratic driver began to contact their parents. He was sentenced to 60 days in jail, 100 hours of community service and two years of probation. He will be required to serve at least half his sentence before being eligible for parole and was fined $500. He was fired from the limo company and from his second job as a school bus driver.
Alcohol Awareness Month focuses on preventing teen drunk driving accidents
April is Alcohol Awareness Month and perhaps there is not better illustration than this case when it comes to the need for personal responsibility. Our teenagers are the most at risk through graduation and the beginning of summer break.
While new statistics from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health show an encouraging downward trend in alcohol consumption among underage users – past-month drinking down 12 percent, binge drinking by 33 percent and heavy drinking by 48 percent – the increasing permissiveness surrounding marijuana and the prevalence of prescription narcotics has diversified the risks.
Still, teenagers use alcohol more than they do all other illegal drugs combined. In fact, more than 9 million teens ages 12 to 20 admitted drinking in the last 30 days, 5.9 million self-identified as binge drinkers and 1.7 million were heavy drinkers. Meanwhile, nearly 900,000 teens needed treatment for an alcohol problem in 2012, yet only about 76,000 received treatment.
Drunk driving remains top cause of fatal car accidents in Illinois, throughout U.S.
Nationwide, alcohol-related traffic fatalities claimed 10,322 lives in 2012, accounting for about one-third of the nation’s traffic fatalities. Alcohol was involved in 393 of Illinois’ 956 traffic fatalities that year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
About 1 in 5 drivers ages 16 t0 20 who die in traffic accidents are legally intoxicated, despite not being old enough to legally purchase alcohol. About one-third of fatally injured drivers between the ages of 21 and 24 were legally intoxicated at the time of the collision, the highest of any age group.
Studies also continue to show that teens have a more difficult time quantifying what it means to drive intoxicated. Therefore, they are at higher risk of being involved in a serious or fatal traffic accident than adults with similar blood-alcohol levels. Inexperience, distraction, speeding, failure to wear a seat belt and riding with too many passengers in the vehicle are common contributing factors.