The Water Cooler – Driving Under The Influence Of Alcohol And/Or Drugs

June 10, 2021 12:37 pm · 24 comments

The “Water Cooler” is a feature on where we ask you a question or provide a topic, and you talk about it.

The “Water Cooler” will be up Monday-Friday at noon.

Today’s question:

If the fines were doubled for driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, do you think there would be fewer DUI related collisions (and deaths), or do you think people will drink & drive no matter what the punishment is?

Talk about it….

Simonpure June 10, 2021 at 12:40 PM

I don’t think it would change anything…once in a few drinks the thought process changes for the worse.

Dawg June 10, 2021 at 1:01 PM

It depends on whether a person has a drinking problem or not. Those without a drinking problem, would probably choose not to drive under the influence. Those with a drinking and/or a drug problem will drive anyway. Alcoholics usually don’t think they are too drunk to drive, and sometimes when they get behind the wheel, they are not drunk, but the booze will slowly start to kick in while they are driving and all of a sudden they are drunk, and they don’t even realize it.
No, I do not believe doubling the fines will deter a true alcoholic from driving. Maybe a minimum of six months jail time with mandatory AA meetings and/or some other kind of treatment for first time offenders will help some of them, but it will never help all of them. It doesn’t matter how much jail or prison time they get, if they don’t get help while they are incarcerated, one of the first things they will do when they get out is to start drinking or using drugs again.
I say this from experience, I am a retired RN and I spent 13 years working with drug addicts and alcoholics. I’ve witnessed first hand the devastating effects booze and drugs have on peoples lives, and I know how they think.

Zack June 10, 2021 at 1:03 PM

I do not think it would make a difference. People that drive under the influence clearly have no regard for anyone else or potential consequences to begin with. They are usually the ones that survive too after taking another innocent drivers life.

If you are not able to have a designated driver, use public transportation or a ride service if you are planning a night out drinking then do us all a favor and just stay home and drink there.

iKrissy June 10, 2021 at 1:06 PM

I agree with SimonPure.

Roz June 10, 2021 at 3:19 PM

@ iKrissy~
I agree with you to agree with Simonpure.
He has really good answers,… 🙂

Rich June 10, 2021 at 1:12 PM

First offence require a breathalyzer be installed in all vehicles owned by offender, paid for by the offender. Second offence require rehab. Third offence take away license and car for 1 year.

Randy June 10, 2021 at 1:13 PM

…. imho… some will…some won’t

WC June 10, 2021 at 2:05 PM

Prohibition didn’t work.
The war on drugs didn’t work.
Gun laws don’t work.
Making murder illegal doesn’t work.

So why would anyone think increased DUI penalties would work?

Martinezmike June 10, 2021 at 3:51 PM

Because if your boat’s leaking you gotta drill holes to let the water out.

true love June 10, 2021 at 2:08 PM

DUI punishments hurt minorities in greater numbers. There should be a relief program for minority offenders…

Badge1104 June 10, 2021 at 8:33 PM

So you’re saying minorities drink more and get drunk more? And drive drunk more? So therefore allow it? Isn’t that racist….

nytemuvr June 10, 2021 at 11:23 PM

@Badge1104….It’s not racist if it’s true.

Janus June 11, 2021 at 10:15 AM

I believe the term is “low expectations racism”.

Original G June 10, 2021 at 4:38 PM

Lets say penalty for a DUI is a year in jail and it’s well publicized so everyone is aware of it. A true alcoholic, wonders what it’s going to be like in jail.

Mka June 10, 2021 at 6:55 PM

Nope. These people still drive when they lose their license, uninsured and wreck less. Jail time would be best

The Mamba June 10, 2021 at 7:47 PM

I don’t think monetary punishment would change anything, I have no idea what it is now.

Ancient Mariner June 10, 2021 at 8:39 PM

Simonpure nailed it – everybody knows not to drive drunk, but a drunk person thinks he can drive just fine and doesn’t think the police will have any reason to pull him over. The only way to crack down on drunk drivers is to have random stops and sobriety checks (not checkpoints – just random stops, regardless of driving behaviour). Even the drunk guy will know not to drive when drunk. He might say that he can drive just fine and shouldn’t be pulled over, but he’ll know he wont be able to pass the breathalyzer and that a random stop can nail him.

Noj June 10, 2021 at 9:26 PM

Fines don’t stop DUI drivers. Neither do the worthless DUI classes. Drug abusers deal with their childhood trauma by self medicating. We had a fellow insured who had been convicted of DUI eight times, had been in multiple DUI classes, and finally drove drunk again and killed a young girl up on Taylor Blvd. He was the first person in CC County convicted of murder for his Felony DUI. These poor people have a behavioral problem, solved only by making them aware of their traumatic experiences. Changing behavior is possible. The energy is within you to change.

Kentucky Derby June 10, 2021 at 10:03 PM

There is more to it than a few drinks changing the thought process. They don’t care. They didn’t care prior to getting drunk or they wouldn’t have had that first drink. If they’re out in public, they know they’re driving. If you don’t get it — there’s room for improvement. If you don’t care you don’t care. And nothing will change that. And then there is the alcoholics. A whole different ballgame.

Michael June 10, 2021 at 10:13 PM

Fines mean nothing but jail time would create safer roads while they were incarcerated and a chance for true counseling.

jose June 11, 2021 at 5:32 AM

I consider driving while drunk of on drugs the same as texting while driving. I have a couple of family members that have both sets of problems and one is going to jail or community service for a couple of years and also having to fork out $2000.00 or so for the fine which is typical. This is just for the alcohol.
I myself have nearly been hit several times by both types of people while driving.
Please stop it already as it just wrecks lives.

jose June 11, 2021 at 7:50 AM

I say alcohol/drugs while driving is the same as cell/texting while driving. Both cause serious accidents and broken lives for everyone involved.

Doh June 11, 2021 at 8:51 AM

No, it would not change anything. This is just another state money grab. Currently I believe fines, court fees and lawyers add up to $15,000-. That is a lot for most people.

Dorothy June 11, 2021 at 2:23 PM

Would there be anything about actual enforcement of repeat impaired drivers who just get back into their car over and over again until someone dies? As far as I can tell nothing really stops them, not even the high costs of getting caught.

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