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Common Reasons People Drink and Drive

Although most people understand the risk and legal consequences of a DWI, drinking and driving remains a common problem in Houston and Galveston. So why do people still drive drunk? There are a number of possible explanations.

People Do Not Know Their Limits

Under Texas law, a person is considered driving under the influence if his or her blood-alcohol content (BAC) is .08 percent or higher. Of course, you cannot know your own BAC without some sort of diagnostic tool (such as a Breathalyzer app for your smartphone). So many people drive drunk without necessarily intending to simply because they are unable to recognize when they had “one too many” drinks.

If I’m Never Caught, It Must Be Okay

For some, drunk driving develops as a bad habit. This habit is reinforced by sheer luck–that is, they never get caught, so it must not be a problem. A similar attitude applies to reckless driving behavior like speeding. Nobody thinks going 30 miles over the posted limit is a problem until they crash. Similarly, driving drunk is not taken seriously until someone gets into an accident or faces a criminal charge.

Unable to Break the Cycle of Addiction

Alcoholism is a medical disorder. For alcoholics, it is not a matter of having “just one drink.” Their brain chemistry is different to the point where they are physically addicted to alcohol. Unfortunately, being an alcoholic is not a legal defense to DWI.

There Was No Designated Driver

According to one drunk-driving study sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, “social and environmental influences were the largest category leading to” drunk driving. For example, the study said that drunk driving “often arises from the need for a ride in the absence of an available designated driver.” In other words a simple lack of planning–i.e., anticipating the need for a designated driver–leads to social acceptance of drunk driving.

Taking DWI Seriously

Whatever the reason someone drives drunk, if a person is arrested on suspicion of DWI, there can be long-lasting consequences. Even a first-time DWI offender in Texas may face up to six months in jail and loss of their driver’s license for as much as a year. That is why you must treat any DWI charge as a serious legal matter. If you have been arrested and need assistance from an experienced League City DWI defense attorney, contact the Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates right away.