My kids are getting older, and so far I can’t figure out how or why. But I am working on a way to stop and even reverse the process. No luck yet, but I am hopeful. In the meantime, I have to face the awful reality that my kids will soon be facing some pretty big challenges like driving. And with driving comes the freedom to travel and hang out with friends at parties. Which at some point may have alcohol involved. At this point some of you are putting your fingers in your ears and yelling to drown out the noise. Well stop. First off, you’re reading this, so it’s not doing any good. Second, these are the facts. Trying to stop your child from attending any function that may expose them to drugs or alcohol just won’t work. They’ll find their way there, either by accident, or by design. The only thing we as parents can do, is educate our kids, set some rules, and try to instill good judgment. I’m a parent who believes in giving my kids as many facts as I can so they can figure out for themselves which is the best path to take. So in light of that, I’ve gathered some information on drinking and driving, specifically for those who are under 21.
Drinking alcohol when under 21 is illegal anyway, but when paired with driving, the penalties can be severe. One of the biggest problems with underage drinking is that those who do it often binge drink. On average, those under 21 who are involved in drunk driving accidents have a BAC 5 times the legal limit for adults. This leads to massive lapses in judgment and can cause severe accidents.
Every state has a Zero Tolerance Law. Which means that you will get a DUI if your BAC is above 0%-0.02%, depending on the state. Just a sip can land you in serious trouble. The fines for those under 21 are also inflated. Again, this varies from state to state and ranges from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars and jail time from 24 hours to a year. There’s also a probationary period of 3-5 years and community service and alcohol education classes may need to be taken care of. Many states even have “Use or Lose” laws under which a person under 21 using drugs or alcohol will have their license suspended whether they were driving or not.
The effects of an under 21 DUI are much longer lasting than jail time. Insurance rates will skyrocket. Job applications can be severely impacted. Also, much to my surprise, college applications and financial aid can be denied due to an underage DUI.
The negative impact this can have on a child’s life are staggering. Make sure your child has all the facts, and more importantly, all the household rules against drinking. Tell them early, and tell them often.
The negative impact this can have on a child’s life are staggering, and there are many preventative optins you could take. You can make sure you have a DUI attorney on retainer for any incidents that may occur, or you could make sure your child has all the facts, and more importantly, all the household rules against drinking. Tell them early, and tell them often.