Moped Drivers Tend to Drink. And Crash

According to a fictional ancient gnostic tablet, the drunken god of irresponsible drivers who had their licenses revoked, came to Earth to be closer to his children. Generous, as the tablet describes him, the deity brought a gift. As he landed amidst a crowd of devotees, he raised his arms, one holding a moped and the other one a beer. Ever since, drinking and driving have gone hand in hand even through driver's license cancellation.

Although the text does not mention whether the recipients of the gift actually got to enjoy it before starting crashing, recent studies disclose the long awaited truth: yes, they did but only for a while. The study presented to the American College of Surgeons has revealed that 39% of all moped drivers sustaining accident injuries were nearly twice as intoxicated as motorcycle and car drivers, with a blood-alcohol level greater than .05 mg/dL.

This is due to the fact that in many states mopeds can be driven without a driver's license, taunting the drunkards to hop on, ignite and ride for a short distance before losing control and crashing into lighting poles, farm fences, concrete walls and lots of other stuff. Responsible for the breach in driving regulations are none other than the engines fitted on mopeds, most of which displace no more than 50 cc.

At such a capacity, they can hardly be considered harmful for anyone and since their nearly complete lack of power comes with easy handling, they made it to the no-driver's-license-required list. Furthermore, the law clearly states that drivers who have had their license suspended are still allowed to drive a moped for the aforementioned reason. Unfortunately, mopeds don't come with a sober friend to keep an eye on folks and prevent them from doing anything perilously stupid.

So, what's actually the story of moped drivers? Well, according to Dr. Ashley Christmas of the Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, NC, “These patients were very in tune to the fact that a moped was defined as a motorized vehicle with an engine less than 50 cubic centimeters, so they knew they could still drive this vehicle without a license. We suspect that many moped operators are repeat offenders, whose licenses were previously revoked.”

Although solutions have yet failed to appear, it's safe to assume that unless the law allowing drivers to well, crash mopeds, is revised, the Beijing model may prove quite useful. As you may have already learned, Beijing officials are keeping a certain number of cars off the streets on a daily basis in order to reduce city pollution levels. Apply the same principle here and you get less accidents. Of course, being drunk, many a drivers won't really care about such rules, since they broke the law in the first way, isn't it?
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