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Should There Be Stronger Penalty For DWI/DUI?  
User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 5433 times:

While I have nothing whatsoever against alcohol consumption...

I do believe that general consequences for DWI and/or DUI are grossly inadequate.

In many states in the USA, a person must be caught in three or more DWI incidents before ever seeing mandatory jail time. That's three occassions in which the fool has had a chance to kill other innocent motorists!

Call me insensitive, but I firmly believe that DWI should be statutorily labled as Negligent Manslaughter in the 2nd Degree and carry with it the appropriate sentencing.

You?


PS. on an interesting [seemingly] contrast, I fought the lowering of the intoxication level from 0.10BAC to 0.08 as hard as I could. I'm somewhat proud (for lack of a better word) that my state was the last to stand up to the Federal Government on this issue, even though we did lose out this monday.

33 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineCovert From Ghana, joined Oct 2001, 1445 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 5404 times:

In my state, Pennsylvania, the Governor recently signed legislation reducing the legal threshold to .08.
As a non-drinker I could give less in way of care to drinking and the law, however, drinkers affect me in the sense that questions regarding alcohol law and intoxication take up precious space on my driving exams, therefore I use my precious time studying to answer in way for those who indulge in such behaviour.

It is my humble opinion that drinking in excess impairs the ability to be a rational human being, and as such it it perfectly fine in my book to disregard the right of a drunk to be a freestanding member of society. While watching COPS one time, an Anchorage cop said it best; "We do not negotiate with drunks."

I believe that the DUI penalties are insufficient, but so are most others [SIC.] No matter how much they stiffen penalties, people will still get alcohol and get drunk. Hey you will get vehicular homicide for running that little kid over, but the kid is still dead, and that woman still easily obtained the alcohol. So what she gets life? The next day soembody else will take her place.

It's just like gun control, but that's a different story--it is a long process in many states to register weapons and obtain conceal carry permits, but most people who offend with firearms do not bother to go through these processes. Ban our guns all you want, people will still get them.

With DUI you can't even really do much, the same judge will visit the bar after a stressful day on the bench, sip a few drinks to loosen up, and drive home afterwards.

covert



thank goodness for TCAS !
User currently offlineJAL777 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 5399 times:

Your gonna charge someone with manslaughter when no one is dead? Creative!

User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 5394 times:

happens quite a bit actually, they tend to put the word "attempted" in place of negligent  Insane

User currently offlineJAL777 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 5397 times:

Attempted manslaughter is different then manslaughter. In effect, manslaughter is murder because of negligience.

Attempted manslaughter for DWI's? Fine by me.


User currently offlineBobrayner From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2003, 2227 posts, RR: 7
Reply 5, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 5389 times:

It varies. In some places an attitude shift is necessary.

Places like Germany and Britain have had successful anti-drink-driving campaigns for years... but it doesn't seem to have made such a difference in Belgium.

ISTR local police here were very proud of a recent campaign of random tests in which 90% of drivers were below the alcohol limit - which would be considered far too low in most other places.



Cunning linguist
User currently offline2912n From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 2013 posts, RR: 8
Reply 6, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 5393 times:

Bobrayner is correct. An attitude shift is what is needed. You can have all the laws you want, but until society changes attitudes you will continue to have a problem.

American society still accepts drinking and driving because everyone does it. No one is immune from it. Lawyers, judges, airline pilots, teachers, clerks, McDonalds employees, photographers, doctors, nurses, politicians...the list is endless have driven after a few drinks and got away with it. Drinking too much is still considered to be "cool" by far too many people for the problem to be taken seriously. (witness the "celebrations" at the University of Washington last week when drunken idoits turned over cars etc...)

It took the US about 10 years to kill off about 60,000 young men in Vietnam. We kill that many people in drunk driving crashes in about 2 to 3 years. Where are the protests about the waste of human life? It takes a change in attitudes.


User currently offlineCovert From Ghana, joined Oct 2001, 1445 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 5385 times:

It took PA one day before the federal government's deadline for a disbursement of $12 million in interstate maintenance funds to sign it into law. Says a lot about how everyone up there feels about it.


thank goodness for TCAS !
User currently offlineIndustrialPate From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 5382 times:

Let's see...

- If you take pictures of your girlfriend naked when you're both 16, or videotape yourselves in action & you're caught with the tape when you're older, you're going to go to jail for posession of child porn -- there's no way out.

- If you get caught drinking & driving, your license MAY get suspended for a little while, provided you didn't hurt anybody.


User currently offlineIMissPiedmont From United States of America, joined May 2001, 6260 posts, RR: 34
Reply 9, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 5376 times:

The penalty for a first time DUI is quite enough, and I do not mean an aggravated DUI, .016 or higher, I believe.

If a person does not learn at that stage, and a second offense happens, the court should stomp on them so hard that they won't be able to afford alcohol. I truly believe a second offence should require all pay to be sent to the court and all bills paid by the court. The remainder, if any, put into an account untouchable by the convicted for 5 years. And yes, the administrative costs would be deducted.

On the third conviction, the person should never be allowed to operate a motor vehicle again.



Is grammar no longer taught is schools? Saying "me and her" or some such implies illiteracy.
User currently offlineSeb146 From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 11122 posts, RR: 15
Reply 10, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 5349 times:

Around here, it is not so much that drinking and driving is accepted but more that police are out on other calls--domestic violece, robbery, assault....
I see way too many people under the influence of not only alcohol but drugs as well. They should see how stupid they are acting. Sometimes I wish there were a hotline or something to the police I could call and let them know. But, they would say something like "We will get to it later"
I do agree something should be done but the answer does not lie in stiffening the penalties but increasing the patrols. How quickly does one try to sober up when they are pulled over?

GO CANUCKS!!



Life in the wall is a drag.
User currently offlineB747skipper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 5348 times:

My first wife got car accident and died at age 26, she was 7 months pregnant.
She got hit on the side by an 18-wheeler. The truck driver was drunk. His blood alcohol was 0.014% and admitted smoking marijuana while driving.
xxx
He got condemned to 5 years jail term, which was a second conviction for DUI/DWI for him, got released after 8 months. A year later he was driving trucks again...
xxx
How do you think I feel...? - If you are against severe penalties for DUI, pray God he does not kill you or someone you love...
xxx
One suggestion to the US (and other countries) judicial system, condemn that driver to have his car labeled "DD" (drunk driver) or special licence plates issued for that purpose, or with a large sticker located on the read window, for any subsequent driving he will ever do... same for trucks, if it is his job.
xxx
That is my opinion...
(s) Skipper


User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days ago) and read 5341 times:

His blood alcohol was 0.014%

Perhaps you mean 0.14, as 0.014 isn't intoxicated by any measure in any of the states and most European countries?



One suggestion to the US (and other countries) judicial system, condemn that driver to have his car labeled "DD" (drunk driver) or special licence plates issued for that purpose, or with a large sticker located on the read window, for any subsequent driving he will ever do... same for trucks, if it is his job

I agree. However, since 1977, seven US states have attempted such a scarlet letter.... and every attempt was struck down as "cruel and unusual punishment" for both the driver and anyone who might be dependent on his automobile. What a crock of sh!t  Insane


User currently offlineB747skipper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5326 times:

Dear ConcordeBoy...
xxx
Dont you think that 1 year of leave of absence from my job, airline flying, and nearly 10 years to "get back on my feet", was a cruel and unusual punishment for this husband...?
xxx
Drive safely, all of you - Yes, I typed wrong, 0.14% was the level...
(s) Skipper


User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5323 times:

Dont you think that 1 year of leave of absence from my job, airline flying, and nearly 10 years to "get back on my feet", was a cruel and unusual punishment for this husband...?

like I said... I agree with you... and offer my condolensces as well  Sad

I was, however, mentioning the reason why such legislation has continually failed to be implimented.


User currently offlineBobrayner From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2003, 2227 posts, RR: 7
Reply 15, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5309 times:

What use is a sticker on the rear window?

It's like those baby-on-board stickers. My friends have one, and they say it encourages emergency teams to look for an extra-small passenger in the car if there's a serious accident; but it's redundant because not every car with a baby has the sticker, and not every car with the sticker has a baby.

By the way - drunk drivers usually kill with the front or the side of the car. If you can read a sticker on the back, either you're not at risk, or it's too late to make a difference.

Might as well start branding again...

Simply changing the percentages and thresholds is hardly a good solution. Very few people (probably including me  Smile) have a good idea of how X drinks translates into Y% blood alcohol; and there are millions of drivers out there who just don't think that drunk driving is such a bad thing.

Education & awareness are more needed, I think...

A direct and shocking advert campaign would go a long way. I don't care if a few viewers complain about seeing mangled bodies on the road, and anti-booze slogans, halfway through the Simpsons. It could save hundreds of lives per year.



Cunning linguist
User currently offlineIMissPiedmont From United States of America, joined May 2001, 6260 posts, RR: 34
Reply 16, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 5302 times:

Skipper, I know what you mean but from a different perspective. I was the child who survived. My mother was killed in a head on collision with a drunk driver. I've spent the last 38 tears in hell because I could not protect and save her. The truck driver lost his job and I got a settlement of $125,000 dollars.

I wish he were still driving and I'd never gotten the money on my 18th birthday. The almost $300,000 seemed nice (interest) at the time but I'd rather be kissing my mother's cheek today.

Old wound.



Is grammar no longer taught is schools? Saying "me and her" or some such implies illiteracy.
User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 5299 times:

just don't think that drunk driving is such a bad thing

Therein lies the fundamental problem: many consider DWI to be akin to adultery-- "everybody" does it, and it's only wrong if you get caught  Angry

... and like adultery, not only do many not think that DWI is a bad thing, some actually find it challenging/entertaining!


User currently offline2912n From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 2013 posts, RR: 8
Reply 18, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 5294 times:

Concorde--you hit it. "everyone" does it so it is accepted as long as you don't get caught.

As for education and awareness...most people are aware of it. But they have to make the decision NOT to drive when they are under the influence, meaning their decision making ability sucks. And the cycle continues....

Actually DUI/DWI enforcement is a very high priority for law enforcement, frequently to the exclusion of other priorities. (you can only plug so many holes at one time...)

You can't just sober up when you get stopped. Sure, people try to act sober, but it is usually pretty pathetic....

In the US we are so focused on the play fair game that when a DUI checkpoint is set up the police must publish advance notice of it through the media, then a certain distance ahead of the check point they have to post signs advising that it is coming up and have paths around the check point so that you can avoid it. Judgements that come up out of sterile courtrooms...Not judegments made by the victims or by the people who respond to the crashes or by the families left behind....

If you want to see a nightmare scene come to San Diego on a Friday or Saturday night. Go down to San Ysidro at about 2 am and watch the drunks pour across the border....There are thousands of them...maybe a dozen or so will be arrested for being drunk in public or DUI, but that takes all the cops available out of service so....It is an ugly scene.


User currently offlineDash8King From Canada, joined Nov 2001, 2742 posts, RR: 11
Reply 19, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 5274 times:

If I am drinking then I leave the truck/skidoo at home. At the parties I go to at least 90% of the people drive home drunk. We are or already have changed the law to .05 from .08 which I think is a good idea. Cheap people would be under .08 but still be to fucked up to drive.

User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 5253 times:

We are or already have changed the law to .05 from .08 which I think is a good idea

As anti-drunkdriving as I am... I have to completely disagree with this.

Nearly every statistic available to me for a Louisiana and National scale, as anecdotal as they may be, show that most alcohol contingent (not to be confused with alcohol-related!) crashes causing a fatality and/or damage greater than $20,000 involve a driver in the range of 0.13-0.18BAC

Targetting people less than 0.08 is going to bring in more state revenue, but not going to curb the above instances at all


User currently offlineB747skipper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 5246 times:

I reiterate my opinion...
xxx
A special licence plate required for all drivers convicted of homicide for DUI/DWI for their lifetime. Prevent them from ever working (driving) for hire as cab/taxi driver, truck drivers, bus drivers...
xxx
Same penalty for 2nd conviction of DUI/DWI if it did not include any fatalities.
xxx
FYI - Airline pilots are in "deep trouble" if they get a car DUI/DWI... it is up to suspension and loss of licence... I have a friend who got a couple of DUI/DWI who lost his pilot licence... he admitted to drink slightly over the legal limit, occasionally, but that he always observed the "8 hours drinking before flying rule" of airlines...
xxx
Drive safely  Smile
(s) Skipper


User currently offlineRyangooner From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 969 posts, RR: 23
Reply 22, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 1 day ago) and read 5241 times:

Heres my 2 cents from a UK view and someones who see's drink driving almost every day at work.

The laws are not tough enough, in my opinion a seperate offence (tounge in cheek here!) should be for the DUI offender to be charged also in possession of a lethal weapon.Because thats what it becomes when you drive drunk.

in the UK the legal limit is 35 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath. Approximately 2 pints of beer will take you to that limit if not over.
If you blow between 35 and 115 you will be banned for a minimum of 12 months , if you are over the 115 then you are looking at a jail term - 1st offence simple as that!

by the way you cant attempt manslaughter - you can arrest for murder but need to prove intent - therefore you can charge with negligence ie: manslaughter (unintentional murder)

Ryan

B747skipper my heart goes out to you.

p.s In the states do police conduct sobriety tests at roadside or have they moved up in the world with breath test kits like the U.K?



ooh to ooh to be ooh to be a gooner!
User currently offlineCovert From Ghana, joined Oct 2001, 1445 posts, RR: 2
Reply 23, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 5233 times:

p.s In the states do police conduct sobriety tests at roadside or have they moved up in the world with breath test kits like the U.K?


Breathalyzer™'s are cheap these days, most police departments equip squad cars with them, state police definately have them, the ones that don't have one at the police station, and every prisoner booked in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is tested for sobriety and drugs.

For those departments that don't have them in the cars, they definately bring them out at checkpoints. I just think it defeats the purpose since they advertise checkpoints ahead of time. Only the real dummies get caught.

covert



thank goodness for TCAS !
User currently offline2912n From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 2013 posts, RR: 8
Reply 24, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 5233 times:

Couple of things...

The state makes no money from arresting DUI's. Really the only revenue producer from some type of enforcement is parking tickets. The fines paid by convicted DUI drivers is tiny when compared to the costs of arrest, prosecution etc... (Some agencies now do something called cost recovery in which the person responsible for a DUI crash must pay for the emergency response...ie fire crews, police etc... That can really add up.)

Ryangooner---The roadside "test" is still done to establish probable cause for the arrest. (ie...poor performance on the test shows the inability to drive, regardless of BA.) In addition to that some agencies use a portable AlcoSensor which gives a BA reading. But, at least in California, once you are arrested you must provide a chemical sample, either blood, breath or urine. (most of the time if the driver chooses urine a blood is also taken. In all crashes invovling injury a blood test is done. Failure to voluntarily provide a sample results in an automatic suspension of driving privilages.) The coordination test is not an absolute, but it does help to prove the case, especially if the driver is borderline or below the presumption of .08.


25 Lehpron : " Should There Be Stronger Penalty For DWI/DUI?" Yeah like banning their privilege to drive, it doesnt do any good to get a ticket or end up killing s
26 Covert : The state makes no money from arresting DUI's. Right, at least around here any money recovered goes to the arresting municipality/magistrate district.
27 2912n : Covert, Getting a bit off topic here.... A "speed trap" is illegal under California law. But the city rakes in money off parking tickets. (In San Dieg
28 Covert : Yeah you're right man, here we don't stick it in like Cali. Off topic sorry. covert
29 Post contains images 2912n : You don't have Gray Davis.
30 Post contains images ConcordeBoy : Yeah like banning their privilege to drive Aside from lockdown, how can that truly be enforced? Many (if not most) multiple DWI/DUI drivers are caught
31 BOAC : The only solution short of a zero tolerance policy, which is difficult because of inadvertant taking of alcohol (cough mixture etc) is to have a fairl
32 Ryangooner : Ive seen those booze buses in oz and yeah they are a great idea. unfortunately the law in england and wales does not allow for random breath tests -
33 Post contains images B747skipper : Friends - xxx I am a pilot and I do not drink alcohol 8 hours before takeoff time... When I go to a "party" and do drink a lot, I even prefer to obser
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