Our Opinion: Sober planning will prevent DWI losses

Last year, 234 people lost their lives in vehicle accidents involving an impaired driver.

Those losses represent a component of the “You Drink and Drive, You Lose” enforcement effort continuing through Sept. 5.

The Jefferson City Police Department will be among agencies participating in saturation patrols to enforce the state’s DWI laws.

The 234 fatalities involving impairment represent nearly 30 percent of the state’s 821 fatal wrecks last year. In addition, 957 people suffered serious injuries in crashes involving impaired drivers.

Other consequences of drunken driving listed by police Capt. Bob Cynova include jail time, loss of driving privileges, or being sentenced to use an ignition interlock device. “The potential exists for insurance rates to increase, attorney fees and court costs to be assessed, lost time from work, and even losing your job,” Cynova said, adding: “What about the embarrassment and humiliation you’ll be faced with when family members and co-workers find out?”

The ironic aspect is all these negative consequences are preventable.

Drinking and driving is a choice, but the record shows alcohol impairs the ability for people to make wise choices.

That’s why sober planning in advance is crucial.

Situations and events involving alcohol — even an unexpected invitation — allow enough advance notice to arrange for a designated driver or to commit to calling a taxi.

Those options may seem inconvenient, but the inconvenience is minuscule in comparison to the severe consequences of drinking and driving.

Cynova warms: “Drunk driving is simply not worth the consequences! It’s simple, ‘You Drink and Drive, You Lose!’”

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