Recently a conservative Hamilton County Jury returned a record 9.25 Million dollar verdict against a drunk driver who injured one of my clients. This 4th of July think before you drink! If the police don’t scare you we should. I would rather everyone get home safely than have more clients who have been injured by DUI drivers. Even one case is too many. EVERY DUI wreck is preventable! The National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) states the following about the 4th of July holiday:
- Most Americans don’t realize July 4th is one of the deadliest holidays of the year due to alcohol-impaired driving crashes.
- To save lives on our roadways this Fourth of July, local law enforcement will be cracking down on impaired driving through increased sobriety checkpoints, roving and saturation patrols, and other enforcement methods.
- Impaired-driving crashes killed 10,228 people in 2010, accounting for 31 percent of all traffic-related deaths in the United States. That’s an average of one alcohol-impaired driving fatality every 51 minutes.
- The Fourth of July holiday period (6:00pm July 2- 5:59am July 6) is deadly. In 2010 during the holiday, 392 people were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes. Of those fatalities – 39 percent were in crashes that involved at least one driver or motorcycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 higher.
- Nighttime is particularly dangerous. Across the country, impaired driving fatalities spike during the nighttime hours. During the 2010 July 4th holiday period (6:00pm July 2 – 5:59am July 6), more than 80 percent of alcohol-impaired driving fatalities took place at nighttime (6 p.m. and 5:59 a.m.)
- The proportion of alcohol impairment among drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2010 was almost five times higher at night (6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.) than during the day (6a.m. to 5:59 p.m.) for the July 4th holiday period (6:00pm July 2 – 5:59am July 6).
- Young (18 to 34 year old) people still don’t get the message that drinking and driving kills. During the 2010 Fourth of July holiday period (6:00pm July 2 – 5:59am July 6), 50 percent of young drivers killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes were alcohol impaired (BAC of .08 or higher).
Don’t Start the Celebration Without Planning Ahead. Remember to “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.”
· Death is not the only consequence from impaired driving. Often, people have a hard time recuperating financially from the cost of an arrest or the crash itself.
· Violators often face jail time, the loss of their driver licenses, higher insurance rates,and dozens of other unanticipated expenses from attorney fees, fines and court costs, car towing and repairs, lost time at work, etc.
· Here are a few simple tips to avoid a drunk-driving disaster:
· Plan a safe way home before the fun begins;
· Before drinking, designate a sober driver;
· If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation so you are sure to get home safely;
· Use you community’s sober ride program;
· If you happen to see a drunk driver on the road, don’t hesitate to contact Local Law Enforcement;
· And remember, “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.” If you know someone who is about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely.
· Remember, whether you’ve had way too many or just one too many it’s never worth the risk to drive impaired. If law enforcement pulls you over for drunk driving, you will be arrested. So remember, “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.”
· More information on the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” enforcement crackdown can be found on www.nhtsa.gov/drivesober.