Holiday Drunk DrivingNovember 29, 2019
More than 10,000 people die each year in drunk driving accidents, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). During the holidays, the risk of being involved in a traffic accident increases. The U.S Department of Transportation (DOT) reports that in December 2016, 3,067 people were injured, and 781 people were killed in drunk driving-related crashes.
The NHTSA estimates that drunk drivers are a factor in one-third of all U.S. traffic accident fatalities. These preventable crashes can also result in injuries ranging from bruises to brain trauma, depending on the circumstances surrounding the car accident. Alcohol’s negative effects are numerous, including the impairment of driving ability. When drivers are under the influence, they experience:
- Delayed reaction time
- Difficulty concentrating
- Impaired perception
- Judgment, self-control, reasoning, and memory impairment
- Loss of balance
- Reduced coordination
- Slowed thinking
Pennsylvania motorists whose blood alcohol content (BAC) level is 0.08 percent or higher are presumed to be impaired and may be held liable for injuries they caused in a personal injury lawsuit. Those injured in drunk driving accidents may be entitled to damages, including compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Drinking and Driving During the Holidays
Drivers are more likely to drink during the holidays than any other time of the year due to alcohol-fueled parties. Thanksgiving is the deadliest driving holiday, with an average of 506 driving deaths over the Thanksgiving weekend each year. According to the DOT, an average of 300 people suffer fatal injuries each year in drunk driving crashes from Christmas through New Year’s Day.
Many of these fatalities are caused by drunk drivers attempting to make their way home from the festivities. It is important for motorists to take extra safety precautions when traveling and refrain from driving drunk during the holidays.
Stay Safe on the Roads This Holiday Season
The NHTSA provides recommendations for staying safe on the roads this holiday season, including:
- Having a designated driver
- Staying sober
- Taking public transportation
- Using a ridesharing service
- Using the NHTSA SaferRide app
- Wearing your seat belt
Compensation for a Drunk Driving-Related Injury in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania victims of drunk driving accidents may be eligible for damages arising as a result of the accident, even if they were partially at-fault. Under the modified comparative fault structure, parties who are partially responsible may receive an award reduced by an amount proportionate to their percentage of fault.
However, because Pennsylvania is a no-fault state, those who selected no-fault coverage when purchasing insurance are typically limited to filing a claim under their own insurance policy to recover medical expenses, regardless of who caused the accident. Contact a car accident attorney to discuss your legal options.
Delaware County Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Represent Those Injured by Drunk Drivers Over the Holidays
If you or a loved one is injured by a drunk driver this holiday season, contact a Delaware County car accident lawyer at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello. Located in Media, Pennsylvania, we represent clients throughout Delaware County, Bucks County, Chester County, Lancaster, Montgomery County, Norristown, Philadelphia, Reading, and West Chester. For a free consultation, complete our online contact form or call us at 610-892-4940.