Maryland has been quite vocal about its campaign against drunk driving. The number of police officers on the road, sobriety check points and other displays of state force are hard to miss. Anyone in Charles County who has a drink or two before driving should watch out because Maryland officers seem ready to pull someone over for even the smallest of infractions. This seemingly overzealous response continues despite a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that says the number of teenagers who drink and drive has plummeted over the past 21 years.
The report found that only 1 in 10 high-school age teenagers will drink and drive, a substantially lower number than in 1991 when it was slightly more than 1 in 5. Though the number of teens who are drinking and driving has been more than halved, Maryland police have been active in searching for, stopping and arresting for teenagers who they believe to be intoxicated. What is also important to note is that this number includes anyone who has had only a little alcohol to anyone who had been binge drinking before driving.
Statistics show that of the teenage drivers who were involved in fatal car accidents, only 20 percent had any alcohol in their systems. Approximately 19 percent of that 20 had less than the legal limit of intoxication in their systems.
With no sign of police lessening their invasive drunk driving campaigns, it is very possible that a teenage driver will be pulled over. Under the pressure of a stop, investigation and field sobriety tests, he or she may say something that police can twist and use as evidence of drunk driving. It is important that teenagers and anyone accused of drunk drivers talk with an attorney before saying anything to police in order to better protect their rights.
Source: USA Today, "CDC: Teen drinking and driving falls by half," Chris Woodyard, Oct. 3, 2012
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