Drunk driving

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Should Drunk Driving be a crime? If driving with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) above a certain limit should this constitute a legal violation?

Statement of background with agreed points

1. The various versions of "driving under the influence" generally constitute a misdemeanor (punishable by up to one year in jail).

2. It is illegal in all states to drive with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or above.

3. Driving is the most dangerous activity most people do in their day.

4. For all crashes in 2004, the alcohol involvement rate was 5 percent during the week and 12 percent during the weekend. (NHTSA, 2005) http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/pdf/nrd-30/NCSA/TSF2004/809905.pdf

5. The impact of alcohol involvement increases with injury severity. Alcohol-involved crashes accounted for 10 percent of property damage only crash costs, 21 percent of nonfatal injury crashes; and 46 percent of fatal injury crash costs. (NHTSA 2002)

Contentious points

1. Everytime you get in your car to drive there is a %chance you could die, based on your driving and others. Any estimates? If Drunk Driving laws had not been introduced what would this % be (awareness advertising would have dropped the rates)?



Wikipedia Article on Drunk Driving Wikipedia Article on Reckless Driving

   * James B. Gould, "A Sobering Topic: Discussing Drunk Driving in Introductory Ethics" in 'Teaching Philosophy' 21:4 (December 1998), 339-360.
   * Douglas N. Husak, "Is Drunk Driving a Serious Offense?" 'Philosophy and Public Affairs' 23 (1994).
   * Bonnie Steinbock, "Drunk Driving." 'Philosophy and Public Affairs' 14 (1985).
   * James D. Stuart, "Deterrence, Desert and Drunk Driving," 'Public Affairs Quarterly' 3 (1989).