Posted by: Jeff Rhodes | December 7, 2011


The DUI arrest and subsequent resignation of FAA Director Randy Babbitt brings to mind, once again, the risks of drinking and driving.  The risks to our own safety and to the innocent people in our path are well documented.  We’ve all heard that “drunk driving kills” so many times, that I’m not sure many of us really believe it most of the time.  Most of us have had a drink or two with dinner, or at a party, and driven home without any issues whatsoever.   During the holiday season, this probably happens even more frequently. 

The risk of operating a vehicle while intoxicated is insipid.  It’s a seemingly minor risk that doesn’t hurt us time and time again.  Eventually, we push the limits, taking more and more risk, the more successful outcomes we have.  Thankfully, most would never drive when they feel DRUNK.  Usually, we feel fine and actually do retain a good portion of our wits and abilities behind the wheel. 

But a 0.08 blood alcohol level (the legal limit in most states) really isn’t much.  Many people feel “fine” after the number of drinks necessary to put them over the state BAC limit.  Remember – when it comes to the law, it’s not about how well you “hold your liquor.”  For the purposes of a DUI arrest, the limit is based solely of the ratio of alcohol in your blood to your body weight.   A 120 pound woman will probably be beyond the .08 limit by the time she starts her third drink.  For a 200 pound man, finishing three beers or three mixed cocktails will do it. 

You could become uninsurable, be fined, go to jail, lose your job, or lose your career for driving after a few drinks.  Think about the risks.  Be careful out there.

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