Drunk driving is one of the countrys biggest social challenges. The effects of such action could lead to effects spanning from health risks to risks on the persons life and that of others. It is therefore very important to consider the effects of drinking and driving while stressing the fact that this is not a safe practice. This paper looks at the effects of drunk driving.
Of necessity, it is important to know that drivers use their senses of touch, sight and feel to control their vehicles (Science Net, 2010; Jacobs, 2013). However, these senses are controlled by the brain. Safe driving puts a requirement on the brain to be alert and make quick decisions in the face of danger on the road. Alcohol can have an effect on any of the brains functions that allows the driver to have the necessary skills for decision making.
Alcohol, for example, reduces the reaction time on the part of the driver. This means that where a driver is expected to make a quick change such as swerving or braking, it is not possible since they are drunk and their reflexes are slowed down. Moreover, eye muscle function is slowed down as a result of alcohol intake, meaning that vision is no longer at its best when a driver is drunk. The result of such is that there is a likelihood of blurred vision, fake visual perception and altered eye movement that could result in the driver seeing their own things. Moreover, perceiving colors and seeing at night could also be affected. With a combination of poor reaction time and poor vision, the person might see the danger too late to react to it, and thereby cause an accident.
On the other hand, vehicle tracking can be hampered once one has taken alcohol. When alcohol is in the drivers system, it becomes difficult to determine the position of the car on the road. This means that one could be driving on the wrong side of the wrong but cannot perceive this because they are drunk. Additionally, it becomes difficult to track the position of other vehicles on the road, see the center line and read road signs. This combined with poor eye sight results in tragedy on the road. Furthermore, alcohol causes the loss of attention on the part of the driver. The driver in this case experiences poor concentration on the road. At times, they may even feel drowsy.
Another consideration to make before driving while drunk is ones level of comprehension and coordination. When one is under the influence of alcohol, it becomes very difficult to make correct decisions. This is because, as argued above, ones senses are dulled, resulting in a situation where the driver is no longer rational enough to make proper decisions having considered their own safety and that of their passengers. Moreover, such a driver experiences poorer hand-eye-foot coordination. As a result, they could end up accelerating when they wanted to brake or swerve where they intended to negotiate a bend. The results could be devastating.
Conclusively, drunk driving is a very dangerous action. Its effects have rippled all across the country, with at least forty thousand people getting injured as a result of drunk driving. Maintaining sobriety during driving should thus be a priority in order to reduce the effect on lives.
Jacobs, J. B. (2013). Drunk Driving: An American Dilemma. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Science Net. (2010). Effects of underage drinking. Retrieved from Science Net: http://sciencenetlinks.com/interactives/alcohol/ebook/pages/drunk-driving.htm.
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