Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving

Even a small amount of alcohol can cost you your freedom, or worse—your life.


On the Fourth of July, Americans across the nation celebrate our freedom with festive backyard parties and dazzling fireworks. Don't comprise your freedom by the reckless—and deadly—decision to drink and drive. Drunk driving is illegal and puts you, your passengers, and other road users at risk of serious injury and death. In 2016, almost 200 people were killed in drunk-driving-related crashes during the July 4th holiday period. As you, your friends, and your family prepare for Independence Day celebrations, make sure to keep in mind this vital message: Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving.

2016 July 4th 188 people where killed in drunk driving related crashes, an increase from 2015


Alcohol consumption impairs your thinking, reasoning and muscle coordination—all vital abilities to operating a vehicle safely. At a .08 Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC), your crash risk increases exponentially. Because of this risk, it's illegal in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico to drive with a BAC of .08 or higher. But even a small amount of alcohol can affect driving ability.

Buzzed Driving Affects More than Just You

In 2016, approximately 1 in 6 children involved in drunk-driving crashes died.

And 54% of the time, it was the child's own driver who was drunk.

Learn more

Blood Alcohol ConcentrationPredictable Effects on Driving
.02Decline in visual functions, decline in ability to perform 2 tasks at the same time
.05Reduced coordination, reduced ability to track moving objects, difficulty steering, reduced response to emergency driving situations
.08Concentration, short-term memory loss, speed control, reduced information processing capability, impaired perception
.10Reduced ability to maintain lane position and brake appropriately
.15Substantial impairment in vehicle control, attention to driving task, and in necessary visual and auditory information processing
Blood Alcohol Content and the Predictable effects on driving


Being responsible is easy—if you are drinking, do not get behind the wheel. Your life, and the lives of others are at risk if you do not have a responsible plan to get home safely from your Fourth of July party. Here are a few tips to help you have a safe and fun night of celebration.

  1. Before drinking, choose a non-drinking friend as a designated driver.
  2. If you are hosting the party, make sure all guests leave with a sober driver.
  3. If you see a drunk driver on the road, call law enforcement immediately.
  4. Always wear your seat belt. It's the best defense against drunk drivers.

Traffic Safety Marketing Resources

Traffic Safety Marketing ResourcesNHTSA offers materials for numerous traffic safety campaigns, including drunk driving. These marketing tools provide ways to get involved with campaigns.