Drunk driving is a hazard that doesn't have to exist. Drivers can make the decision not to get behind the wheel when they're intoxicated.
Unfortunately, drunk driving does take a toll on the population and leads to many deaths and injuries every year. In 2016, 10,497 people were killed in alcohol-related collisions. That adds up to 28% of all automobile crash-related deaths that year.
Drivers with blood alcohol concentrations of .08% or higher and who were involved in fatal crashes were 4.5 times more likely to have a conviction for past DWIs on their records?
History does tend to repeat itself, and those who do not get the alcohol or substance abuse treatment they need may make the mistake of driving while intoxicated multiple times. While they might get home safely on many of those drives, it only takes one mistake at the wrong time to lead to a serious crash.
There are strategies that help reduce drunk driving
The good news is that drunk driving can be prevented. States can implement processes, such as sobriety checkpoints, to briefly stop drivers to check for intoxication. The state can also strengthen drunk driving laws, making sure that those who are convicted are taken off the roads and given the support they need to avoid making the same kind of mistake again in the future.
In combination, techniques like using ignition interlock devices and mass media campaigns can work to reduce the total number of drunk driving crashes. It may take time and effort from a number of angles to lower the risk to people on the roads, but it's worth it to prevent even one death.
What do you do if you're a victim of a drunk driving crash?
The most important thing for you to do is to make sure that you get the medical care and support you need. The driver may face criminal charges, and you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit to hold them accountable for your financial losses, pain and suffering, and more.