Drunk driving hits close to Normal West’s heart


Through the website GiveForward, donations are being made to help the Collins with medical expenses. The goal is set at $45,000 with just over $42,000 being donated thus far. If any person would like to donate they can visit www.giveforward.com/fundraiser/p3b4/fundraiser-for-michael-collins.

On Wednesday, Normal West graduate Michael Collins died due to brain damage from being hit by a drunk driver.

Collins attended ISU and was studying exercise science. He played baseball for Heartland Community College his first two years of college and was helping coach the U-High boys with his father.

In all 50 states, the legal limit for drunk driving is a blood alcohol concentration level of .08. A 120-pound female can reach this level of intoxication after only two drinks, and a 180-pound male can be at .08 after only four drinks. These numbers, however, are an average; alcohol affects every person differently. One drink may be enough to push some people over the legal limit.

At a .08 BAC level, drivers are so impaired that they are 11 times more likely to have a single-vehicle crash than drivers with no alcohol in their system. Although .08 is the legal limit, 25 years of research shows that some impairment begins for both males and females after only one drink.

Driving under the influence has started to become way too prevalent in the United States today.

Every 90 seconds someone is injured due to drunk driving. Everyday there are 28 deaths due to drunk driving. Every year there are about 11,000 deaths due to driving intoxicated, about 500 of those being children under the age of 16. The question that needs to be asked is, is that drink worth it?

Every time you get behind the wheel after having even a couple sips of alcohol you are a threat to everyone else on the road. Not only can you hurt yourself but more importantly the innocent people driving too.

In the last year there has been four tragic deaths due to driving under the influence in Bloomington/Normal.

Two of those deaths were people that have attended or graduated from Normal West.

These deaths have all hit very close to home and yet people are still debating on whether they should take a sip of that drink and get behind the wheel.


The legal age for consumption is 21 years old. Kids in high school shouldn’t even be participating in this activity.

High school students who use alcohol or other substances are five times more likely to drop out of high school. Teen alcohol use kills about 4,700 people each year.

So I urge everyone to do the right thing and stay away from alcohol.

Don’t get behind the wheel and put not only your life but also someone else’s life at risk. As a school community we have got to get this under control. Too many young lives are being cut short.