I bet you’ve heard them all, there’s the “Oh, don’t worry I’ve had enough water so I’m not drunk!” or the classic “I slept a couple of hours, I’ll be okay to drive!”. The excuses go on and on, and the fact is, that myths like these can lead to deadly circumstances. It’s estimated that drinking and driving related accidents cause 3.4– 4.1 deaths per day in Canada, thats 1082 deaths per year. Scary. Stuff.
The thing that people don’t realize, is that many drinking and driving collisions occur when the driver doesn’t even realize that he or she is still drunk.
Hopefully, by debunking some of the most common drinking and driving myths, I can help you all
keep the roads safer! These tips are proudly supported by the Action Sudbury Committee (for which I am a proud member!), an organization who’s goal is to eliminate the unnecessary tragedies caused by impaired driving in and around the Greater Sudbury area. Click HERE to learn more about this incredible organization.
MYTH #1: My car keys weren’t in the ignition so I can’t be charged.
TRUTH: The law says that you are presumed to be in care and control of a vehicle if you are in the driver’s seat. Even if you aren’t in the driver’s seat it is still possible to prove that you were in care and control of the car through other factors. Some people have been found guilty while changing a tire, and even filling their car up with gas.
MYTH #2: It’s ok to drive after a couple of drinks. I’ve always driven after taking a drink or two. It makes no difference.
TRUTH: ANY alcohol impairs driving and increases the risk of collision, PERIOD.
MYTH #3: It’s okay to drive if you have a hearty meal after a night of drinking.
TRUTH: If you drink on an empty stomach, the alcohol passes directly into the small intestine and from there into the bloodstream and brain. There are no barriers to the absorption of alcohol. Eating after consuming alcohol changes nothing. The alcohol is already in your system. It is too late. Going for a late night McDonalds run has no effect on your blood alcohol level! Not even fries can save you.
MYTH #4: Cold showers and black coffee can sober up a drunk person.
TRUTH: Cold showers, coffee, and exercising will not sober up someone who’s been drinking. Only time can make someone sober. Giving a cold shower and coffee to a person who’s been drinking won’t sober them up. They’ll just be drunk, cold, wet, and awake.
MYTH #5: I must be okay to drive when I wake up in the morning and do not feel drunk.
TRUTH: JUST BECAUSE YOU SLEPT, DOESN’T MEAN YOU’RE SOBER. Alcohol stays in your system regardless of whether you sleep or not. You may wake up in the morning not feeling impaired, but you can still have a BAC that is over 80. It takes about two hours to burn off each drink, so a person who has 10 standard sized drinks, needs about 20 hours to get back to a zero BAC.
MYTH #6: If you’re drunk and drive carefully, you won’t get caught.
TRUTH: The reality is, spot checks are popping up everywhere, in big and small towns alike. So don’t even try it. Check yourself before you wreck yourself people.
Do me a favour? Don’t drink and drive. And please, watch for others around you making some of the common mistakes that I’ve mentioned above. Drinking and driving affects so many people in our community. It has ruined lives and has shattered families.
This blog is dedicated to all those who have lost their lives or have been affected by the tragedies of drinking and driving.