In an effort to crack down on what it considers a major public safety issue, the Louisiana legislature is moving a set of bills aimed at drunk drivers. The new proposed laws run the gamut from increasing penalties on repeat offenders to giving police more ways of testing drivers to see if they are intoxicated.

They are also working furiously to increase the penalties on anyone caught driving a vehicle intoxicated regardless of if it is their first offense or their fifth. It only takes one time drunk behind the wheel for someone to injure themselves of someone else, so why quibble over how many times is ok?

Defensive drivers understand the dangers the drunk driving and don’t do it. They secure a ride from a sober friend in advance or they arrange for a paid ride home from a local cab company. There are a myriad ways for you to get home, no matter where you live, so why should you climb behind the wheel drunk?

According to a study conducted by Louisiana State University, 288 people died in alcohol-related crashes last year. This study along with other state statistics compiled by the state department of transportation and state police, were enough to prompt lawmakers to engage in a furious battle to see how they could better use the legal system to combat the problem.

Louisiana has a reputation as a party capital, and its scattered and isolated of rural communities create the perfect storm of problem areas, especially where drunk driving is concerned. It seems likely that increased vigilance from lawmakers and those who enforce the laws can help bring down the number of people killed by drunk drivers in the state by increasing the punishment for those who get behind the wheel of an automobile drunk. Perhaps then Louisiana will get a reputation for being safe, instead of a place where you can drive drunk with impunity.