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All Press Releases for January 04, 2014 »
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Underage drinking rises in Nebraska, while it decreases throughout rest of U.S.

Laws regarding underage drinking and driving are strict and designed to protect teenagers from more severe DUI penalties,
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    January 04, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Across the nation, a large amount of minors make the decision to get behind the wheel after drinking, or to ride in a car with someone who is intoxicated. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 10 high school students have admitted to drinking and driving, and 1 in 5 teenage drivers involved in fatal crashes had alcohol in their systems. Strict laws exist in every state to discourage underage drinking and driving.

It appears to be working in most states. Teenage drinking and driving has decreased by more than 50 percent since 1991 throughout the U.S. However, according to the Journal Star, underage drinking has actually increased by six percent in Nebraska. People under the age of 21 account for about one-fourth of all alcohol sold in the state. Underage drinking in Nebraska ranks the fifth highest throughout the country. The Century Council reported five fatalities involving underage drinking and driving in Nebraska, and 163 DUI arrests of minors in 2011.

Underage DUI laws aim to prevent accidents and arrests

While laws regarding underage drinking and driving may seem strict, they are to protect teenagers from more severe DUI penalties, as well as to protect others on the road from being hurt or killed. According to AAA, people under age 21 who are caught drinking and driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or higher face a fine of up to $500, jail time of up to 60 days, a driver's license suspension of up to a year and mandatory alcohol treatment, including being responsible for all related costs. Understandably, this can be a difficult burden for parents as well as teenagers. In addition to the financial and criminal consequences, teenagers with DUI convictions can face penalties from their school and the embarrassment and stigma among their peers.

Parents can help their kids avoid being arrested for drunk driving by the examples they set. Some tips by MADD include:
- Setting rules and boundaries about driving and alcohol before the teen is allowed to drive.
- Keeping respectful lines of communication open and honest.
- Knowing where kids are going to be with their friends and with extra-curricular school functions.
- Making smart decisions about drinking and driving.

Parents who are consistently responsible with their own choices stand a good chance of helping their children make good decisions when they're out with their friends.

Contacting an attorney

Being arrested on DUI charges can be a frightening and confusing experience for most teenagers. Although they may have realized they made a mistake, they are still entitled to fair representation in court. An experienced drunk driving defense attorney can help teenagers and their parents get through this difficult process.

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