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The impact of drunk driving accidents on others

Arizona residents may find it alarming to learn that over 230 billion trips are taken in cars by Americans every single year, and one in every 2,000 trips of the 230 billion annual trips is taken by someone who is driving while impaired from consuming alcohol. Nearly one in three traffic deaths are caused or involve a drunk driver.

So in effect accidents caused by drunk drivers are one of the leading causes of loss of life on U.S. roadways, as well as a major source of injury to other motorists. Drunk driving accidents are also a leading cause of billions of dollars' worth of damage to both private and public property.

The human cost far outweighs the property damage. In fact, on average an accident involving drunk driving kills someone in the United States every 53 minutes. Equally as alarming, on average someone is injured every 90 seconds due to drunk driving. What makes these statistics doubly jarring is the realization that these deaths and injuries are entirely preventable.

Of all the drunken driving problems experienced in the United States each year - that includes among other things deaths, crashes and injuries - nearly a third are a result of multiple and repeat offenders. In essence, at any given time a motorist on a U.S. road or highway is potentially sharing the road with a motorist who has racked up three or more drunken driving offenses on their record. Revoking a repeat offender's license may appear to be a good solution.

However, about 60 percent of repeat offenders who have their licenses taken away still drive anyway. Installing ignition interlock systems on their vehicles may help keep repeat offenders of the street. But, the reality drunk driving accidents happen and cause serious injuries and result in death. Anyone who has been in injured by a drunk driver may want to consult with an attorney about their legal options.

Source: MADD, "About Drunk Driving," accessed Oct. 6, 2014

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Law Office of Keith A. Hammond, P.C.

Keith A. Hammond, P.C. Attorney at Law
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