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Effects Of Alcohol

Effects of Alcohol

“Your ability to operate a motorcycle- or any vehicle – is reduced anytime you drink or get high. Drugs, whether legally prescribed or illegal, pose a threat to you, your passenger and others on the road. When it comes to alcohol, even a small amount of alcohol reduces brain function and impairs thinking, reasoning and muscle coordination.” (NHTSA)

Fatal crashes involving alcohol or drug involvement have decreased during 2015-2020 and it stayed constant during 2020-2022. But drug or alcohol impairment has been contributing factor in fatal crashes as the rider fatalities involving drug or alcohol impairment in 2022 was 33%. Notably around 9% of motorcycle fatalities involved impairment due to drugs alone.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), alcohol can negatively affect many of the skills necessary to safely operate a motor vehicle:

  • A BAC as low as 0.02% has measurable effects on the skills necessary for driving (i.e., impaired visual functions and the ability to multitask)
  • Having a BAC greater than 0.5% results in more extreme impairment (e.g., affecting concentration, short-term memory, perception, speed control, information processing, ability to maintain lane position and brake appropriately, vehicle control, attention, and visual and auditory processing)
  • Approximately one-third of all traffic crash fatalities in the United States involve drunk drivers (with BACs of .08 g/dL or higher).
  • Even a small amount of alcohol can affect driving ability. In 2021, 1624 motorcyclists who were killed in traffic crashes found to be drunk (BAC of .08 g/dL or higher).