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How prevalent is drunk driving in the United States?

Drunk driving is a serious problem both here in Louisiana and throughout the U.S. Data collected by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in 2014 showed that police arrested as many as 1.1 million motorists for driving under the influence (DUI) that year. Another study, conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration in 2013 showed that an astounding 28.7 million motorists admitted to operating their vehicle after consuming alcohol. The shocking drunk driving trends don’t stop there either.

FBI data from 2014 also shows that drunk motorists take to the road as many as 300,000 times per day. Police only end up taking 3,200 into custody, though. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data shows that a new person dies in a drunk driving crash every 50 minutes.

A 2017 NHTSA study showed that a person’s risk of becoming involved in a fatal drunk-driving crash at night was nearly four times as high as it was during the daytime. That same study also highlighted how 28% of the fatal crashes on weekends were alcohol-involved, whereas only 15% of the ones on weekdays were.

NHTSA data shows that 27% of all drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2017 were between 21 and 24. Those individuals belonging to the 25 to 34 age group accounted for 26% of all alcohol-involved crashes. Motorists ages 35 to 44 were responsible for 23% of all other fatal drunk driving collisions in 2017. A 2013 study published by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration showed that drunk-driving was the highest among motorists ages 26 to 29 at 20.7%.

Drunk driving is a serious issue. While the fatality rates are high, they could be higher given how many motorists operate their vehicles while intoxicated from either alcohol or drugs without the police stopping them. Drunk driving accidents often result in unsuspecting, innocent car operators’ serious injuries or their death.

Louisiana law allows both survivors and a deceased motorist’s loved ones to sue for their losses. An attorney can advise you whether you qualify to file suit in your Baton Rouge case.

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