November 6, 2013 • Car Accidents
On behalf of Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff, LLP
When comparing the number of drivers on the road to the number of drunk drivers on the road, the percentage of those driving intoxicated and putting others at risk is relatively small. Yet, according to Mothers Against Drunk Drivers, driving drunk is one of the top causes of motor vehicle accidents resulting in injury or death. This means that while the behavior may not be as prevalent, the damage is significant and more needs to be done in order to prevent people from driving drunk.
According to MADD, which is nonprofit organization committed to stopping drunk driving, in the U.S. people take roughly 233 billion motor vehicle trips per year. However, out of these 233 billion trips, only one out of every two thousand is taken by driver who is under the influence.
However, even though the number of drunk drivers may appear relatively low, the fact is that someone is killed in a drunk driving accident roughly every 53 minutes in the U.S. This equates to literally thousands of people each year dying in accidents that could have easily been prevented.
In addition to the fact that someone is killed every 53 minutes in a drunk driving-related accident, someone in the U.S. is also injured every 90 seconds because of a drunk driver. Again, this is a rather frightening statistic and goes to show just how serious the issue of drunk driving is in the U.S.
In just looking at the state of New York, there were 315 people killed in drunk driving accidents in 2011.This number represents 27 percent of all the traffic deaths in the state for that year.
In all of these cases, the drunk driver had a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or higher. The legal limit in New York is 0.08 percent.
In the end, the message is that drunk driving accident can be prevented by drivers being cautious and not getting behind the wheel after drinking. And while suspending licenses and ignition interlock devices are some ways to punish those who drive drunk, those injured filing lawsuits also sends the message that this type of behavior is not OK.
Source: MADD, “About Drunk Driving,” accessed on Nov. 6, 2013