22
Sep 2014
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Preventing Irvine Drunk Driving Collisions Critical Autumn Task

After consuming alcohol, impairment begins almost immediately. Even a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of .02 has a measurable impact on your judgment and mood. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention make clear, the more alcohol you consume, the more your cognitive and physical function are affected. When you have consumed too much alcohol, you can no longer effectively do basic tasks like driving. This is why we try to keep drunk drivers off the road. 

There is a lot of focus on preventing intoxicated driving the summer months when kids are out of school and when people tend to drink on holidays like Fourth of July, Memorial Day and Labor Day. In fact, as Forbes reports, August is the most dangerous month of the year. However, just because the summer is over does not mean that the risk of drinking and driving decreases in Irvine or across California. In fact, football season, Halloween and Thanksgiving are times during fall when a lot of drunk people are on the roads.

Drivers need to do their part to prevent drunk driving collisions this fall by making a commitment not to drink and drive. Education and enforcement can also help to reduce the risk of motorists getting behind the wheel impaired.

Preventing Drunk Driving Accidents This Fall

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted a high-profile crackdown over Labor Day. The nationwide Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign ran from August 15 through the holiday weekend and the goal was to catch drunk drivers before they could hurt themselves or others.

Campaigns like this one are important because of the tremendous costs of drunk driving. Lost lives cannot ever be measured. However, the NNHTSA did estimate the costs of drunk driving. The NHTSA found that intoxicated drivers cost the nation $47 billion in direct economic impact in 2010 alone. This is an average of $152 for every single person in the United States.

When also factoring in the loss of life and the loss of quality of life due to permanent injuries, the cost of drunk driving rose to $195 billion. Each year, there are more than 10,000 deaths annually because of intoxicated driving. In California alone, 802 people lost their lives in 2012 according to Mothers Against Drunk Driving. A total of 35 percent of the people who die are passengers, are occupants of other cars or are not occupants of cars at all. Bicycle riders, pedestrians and innocent motorists could die because of someone’e else’s decision to drive intoxicated.

Even a simple injury can be expensive. In crashes where a driver has a blood-alcohol content of .08, the average economic cost of a minor injury is $22,000, not counting an additional $25,000 in losses caused by a reduced quality of life. If the victim of a drunk driving suffers a critical injury, the costs can be as much as $1.1 million plus almost $5 million for the lost quality of life.

Driving drunk is not worth the cost. Just because the Drive Sober campaign is now over does not mean that you shouldn’t still be aware of the risks of arrest, accident or injury.

If you’ve been injured, or you lost a loved one, contact the Law Offices of Daniel C. Carlton at (949) 757-0707 to speak with a personal injury attorney in Irvine, CA.