Students celebrating prom leads to more DUIs

Students celebrating prom leads to more DUIs »Play Video
TRI-CITIES -- If it's the third week of May, it means one thing: Prom season. It's a night that's known for its lasting memories, but add alcohol into the mix and the result could be disastrous.

“It's not something that happens to somebody else; it's something that can happen to you," says Kathy Blanchard. She’s the parent of a high school student. And like any concerned mom, she worries how peer pressure will affect her kids.

"Influences that will be hard to say no to. Across all levels, drinking would be one of them," she added.

Kathy is right to worry. Too often enough, state troopers come into contact with students who have had too much to drink on prom night. The result can be disastrous.

“Every year this time, we investigate either serious injury and/or fatality collisions involving someone from a senior class,” says Trooper Brian Bond with the Washington State Patrol.

The number of DUI tickets given out during prom season usually doubles from the previous few months. It's a trend that Trooper Bond says can be stopped-- if students look out for each other.

“Whether it be multiple students in one car and or just a single student, it affects everybody in the community and it affects the whole school," Brian continued.

Troopers tell us even if you don't get in an accident, having just one drink can still land you in a mess of trouble.

The legal limit for driving with any kind of alcohol in your blood is .08, but that's if you're over 21. If you're a minor and you register any alcohol what-so-ever, you're going to get a minor in consumption, but if it's above .02, you'll also get hit with a DUI.

“Don't be afraid to step up to the plate and intervene,” says Brian.

A DUI can land you in prison and could cost you as much as 5 thousand dollars.