Photo from the Times West Virginian

Every year 1.3 million people die fatally in car accidents leaving friends and family to gather in black and mourn.  Missing a signal or glance over the shoulder could potentially end someone’s life. On average it takes 2.3 seconds to react to a situation on the road. In those 2.3 seconds, a truck could come barreling down the road and collide with another unsuspecting car causing havoc and loss. These auto accidents are why safe driving laws are vital to know before getting behind the wheel.

Federal law requires that you take a driving course, and pass your driving test before you are legally allowed to drive on the road. Once you are legally allowed to drive, you are obligated to follow certain laws to be safe for yourself, and the people around you. Refusing to follow these laws can result in a substantial amount of fines and in extreme situations, jail time.

Using your signals, checking your mirrors, following the lights, signs, and putting down your phone are just examples of how you can ensure you get home safe. Though car accidents aren’t always caused by human error, it is important to know what you can do to lower the number of accidents that happen every year.

Driving is considered to be a privilege and can be taken away in a court of law under grave circumstances. There are numerous instances where your license can be revoked. One being getting pulled over and discovered to be driving under the influence. It’s worth noting that even a Blood Alcohol Level (BAC) of .01% in any person under 21 results in a DUI. That is a big  difference from the .08% widely known for legal 21 year old drinkers.

Driving under the influence can alter vision, concentration, and reaction time leading to an increase in mistaken judgment and death. According to the CDC, 10,497 people died due to alcohol consumption, and because of these tragedies laws have made it so driving under the influence does not go unpunished.

Driving is important, and it must be done safely. Driving makes it so you can see loved ones, explore, and get places fast. Putting down the phone, calling a cab, or simply asking someone else to drive can help lower the chances of being lowered 6 feet under.