The CDC reports that at all levels of blood alcohol concentration (BAC), young people are more likely to be involved in alcohol-related traffic accidents than older people. One out of every three drivers who is found to have a BAC higher than 0.08% is between the ages of 21 and 24.
Motorcyclists are also at a higher risk of getting into a drunk driving accident. A third of all bikers killed in fatal accidents have BACs above the legal limit.
Accident attorney Marya Fuller has devoted her career to helping injury victims recover and move forward with their lives. She knows how difficult it can be to face high medical bills, debilitating injuries, and time away from work because of the negligent actions of a drunk driver. She is committed to helping her clients obtain the justice and compensation they deserve for their physical, emotional, and financial losses.
Alarming Drunk Driving Statistics
Drunk driving continues to be a leading cause of accidents, injuries, and fatalities on American roadways. Consider the following statistics:
- Every day in the U.S, approximately 28 people die in drunk driving wrecks
- Drunk driving accounts for roughly 30% of all traffic-related deaths
- Someone dies in a drunk driving crash every 52 minutes
- Drinking and driving costs more than $44 billion in deaths and damages annually
How Does Alcohol Affect Driving?
There are four main ways in which alcohol can negatively affect a driver’s capabilities:
- Reaction time: When operating a vehicle, you need to react quickly to your surroundings. Alcohol consumption lengthens a driver’s reaction time, making drunk drivers less capable of processing information and responding to essential driving tasks.
- Vision: In order to drive safely, you must have clear sight. Drinking alcohol can cause blurred vision, double vision, and impede your ability to focus. Studies show that a driver’s vision can be impaired with a BAC as low as 0.02 percent.
- Color distinction: Traffic signals, signs, and other roadway markings send important information to drivers using color. Drinking can make it difficult for a driver to distinguish colors, further increasing the risk of a crash.
- Judgment: It is often necessary to make split-second decisions when behind the wheel. When a driver consumes alcohol, even in relatively small quantities, his or her judgment becomes impaired. Impaired judgment significantly increases the risk of causing a collision.
What Amount of Alcohol Impairs Driving?
Any amount of alcohol consumption increases the risk of an auto accident. The more a driver drinks, the more likely he or she will be to commit serious errors that can injure or even kill someone else. According to the CDC, various BACs can affect drivers in the following ways:
- 0.02%: A driver experiences impaired vision and has difficulty performing two tasks simultaneously (i.e., drive a vehicle and anticipate potential hazards).
- 0.5%: A driver experiences coordination problems and an impaired response time. At this level, a driver also has a hard time steering and tracking moving objects.
- 0.08%: A driver has difficulty concentrating, a diminished ability to process information, and reduced visual perception.
- 0.10%: A driver experiences difficulty braking properly and maintaining lane position.
- 0.15%: A driver’s ability to control a vehicle is substantially impaired. At this BAC level, drivers struggle to stay focused on the task of driving and experience significant difficulty processing auditory and visual information.
Common Drunk Driving Collisions
Alcohol impairs any driver’s ability to operate a vehicle safely and increases the risk for any type of traffic accident. However, there are certain types of collisions that occur more frequently when drinking is involved, including:
- Side-to-side impact due to weaving or drifting
- T-bone and head-on collisions at intersections
- Rear-end collisions
These wrecks can affect injury victims for the rest of their lives. Even when drivers are charged with drunk driving, it does not automatically result in their victims recovering compensation for subsequent damages. In order to obtain compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, emotional distress, and other losses, you must collect insurance funds from all available sources and you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit. In these cases, it is in your best interest to seek the counsel of a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer to protect your rights and best interests.
Don’t face your injuries alone. Accomplished personal injury attorney Marya Fuller is a specialist in accident and injury law. She takes the time to fully understand the details in your case and the challenges you are facing. She knows your case is as unique as you are, and she will customize a legal strategy that is tailored to your individual circumstances and needs.
If you have been harmed in an accident, call Fuller & Fuller, Attorneys at Law today at (800) 570-4878 for a free case evaluation. We proudly represent injury victims throughout Washington from our offices in Olympia and Tacoma.