In early January, a family of five returning to Michigan from a vacation in Florida was killed by a wrong way driver on I-75 near Lexington. The wrong way driver, who was also killed in the crash, is believed to have been intoxicated. The collision happened around 2:30 AM in the northbound lanes. The SUV the family was riding in burst into flames at the time of impact.
Many people underestimate the consequences of drunk driving in the United States, but drunk driving causes 10,000 fatalities each year. Operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs is not only dangerous, it’s also a serious criminal offense.
DUI in Kentucky
The penalties for driving under the influence (DUI) are harsh in Kentucky, even for first-time offenders. In Kentucky, a driver found to be operating a vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Level (BAC) of .08 or higher is charged with DUI and faces costly fines and penalties. For drivers under the age of 21 found to be driving while impaired, the penalties increase significantly.
Depending on any prior DUI charges you may have, if you are found guilty and convicted of DUI in Kentucky, the following are some of the penalties you face:
- Traffic fine from $250 to $10,000.
- Jail time from 48 hours to five years.
- Community service.
- Substance abuse education program.
- Suspension of driver’s license.
- Installation of an ignition interlock system in your vehicle after your second offense.
Additionally, when you’re charged with DUI, you face negative consequences like court time, increased insurance rates and potentially lost wages. A conviction could also affect your job and reputation–both personally and professionally.
Drunk driving is serious–if you choose to get behind the wheel after drinking, you put yourself and others in jeopardy. Before you go out for the night, make plans to get home safely by designating a sober driver or planning to use a ride-sharing service.