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How Often Do Drunk Drivers Cause Accidents?

Posted on June 22nd, 2020 by Oddo & Babat, P.C.

Car Accident Lawyer

There was a time, not so long ago, that drunk driving was considered unwise, but ultimately “no big deal.” Thankfully, public attitudes have changed, as have enforcement of DUI laws and punishments for convictions. Advocacy groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving have created important cultural and legal changes against this inexcusable behavior.

Unfortunately drunk driving remains a huge problem in the United States. Statistics show that around 10,000 people are killed each year, on average, in drunk driving accidents. That amounts to 29 deaths per day, or one every 50 minutes. Non-fatal injuries in alcohol-related crashes total about 800 injuries per day.

If you’ve been seriously injured (or a loved one has been killed) by a drunk driver, you do have legal options. In addition to criminal charges the drunk driver will likely face, you can also file a personal injury or wrongful death suit in civil court.

When Drunk Driving Leads to Accidents

Alcohol-related crashes tend to be particularly brutal and destructive because the normal mitigating factors are not present. When a sober driver causes an accident, it is often due to an understandable mistake such as a few moments of inattention. When the crash becomes imminent, the driver’s survival instinct kicks in and he at least tries to slow the car or swerve out of the way.

Drunk drivers often exhibit none of these behaviors. They may not even try to brake ahead of the crash. The accident scenarios also tend to be far more extreme, such as driving the wrong way down the highway. The end result is typically a crash that results in serious injury, permanent disability or death for the non-drunk victim.

Legal Guidance Is Available

If you have recently been injured in a drunk driving accident and/or have lost a loved one as a result of an impaired driving collision, please do not hesitate to schedule a consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney now. In general, drivers have a duty of care to those around them. When they breach this duty by driving negligently or recklessly while impaired, they may generally be held responsible under the law for the harm that they cause as a result of their behavior. Practically speaking, this means that you may be able to hold the drunk driver that caused you and/or your family harm liable for his or her behavior in civil court.

Please note that this is a different process than criminal court. As a result, even if the drunk driver in question is being held accountable under the criminal system, you still may be able to file a separate civil lawsuit and recover financial damages accordingly. A law firm has extensive experience with collision cases and would be happy to answer your questions. Please schedule your confidential, risk-free consultation with a lawyer, like a car accident lawyer from Barry P. Goldberg, today. 

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