Texan Drunk Driver Just Misses Out on BBQ – His Own.

drunk driving is dangerousA Texas drunk driver had a frightening near miss in Abilene recently. Victor Villareal had just hit a parked vehicle and had passed out in his truck as it burst into flames.

Fortunately a police officer was on hand to drag him out of the truck in time to avoid a horrible fate.

When tested, Villareal was found to have a blood alcohol level over twice the legal limit. Moreover, this was a repeat offense, which means that he faces a felony DWI charge.

If every incident of drunk driving ended in tragedy, the crime would probably be rare. The sad fact is that many times people are able to get home without incident after having one, or two, or a few too many. That is why they do it again, and believe the fiction that they are “okay to drive” or are “good drivers when they’ve only had a few.”

Eventually something happens. Either the drunk driver crashes or gets apprehended. Many – too many of them – get killed or injured, or kill or injure someone else. This is a case that would have ended with a horrible death had there not been an officer on the scene to rescue the driver.

The driver in question is a repeat drunk driver, who probably should have had an ignition interlock installed on his truck. An ignition interlock, or car breathalyzer, prevents a vehicle from starting if the driver has been drinking.

Texas now requires ignition interlocks for all drunk driving offenders, but there’s a hole in the law: the state does not require compliance-based removal. That means that the device gets removed after a stated time period, even if the offender has failed breath tests during that time. With compliance-based removal, the offender must pass a period – usually four months – with no failed tests before the device can be removed from the vehicle. This ensures that the offender is ready to be a responsible driver. A number of states insist on compliance-based removal, under the assumption that a driver who can’t go four months without failing an interlock test shouldn’t be driving without one. It’s a good assumption, and one that Texas legislators should consider incorporating into their otherwise excellent law.

It was just one Friday night in Abilene, but it showed how dangerous drunk driving can be at its worst.