Almost 30 people die every single day die due to car crashes because of drunk driving in the United States; one death every 51 minutes. In 2013, 10,076 people were killed due to drunk driving; almost “31% of traffic-related deaths.” Despite these facts, people still continue to drive drunk or under the influence of drugs. And these irresponsible drivers continue to maim or kill their victims. In addition to criminal penalties, those who harm others while driving drunk should be brought to justice by making them pay for the harm they did to the unfortunate people who encountered them on the road.
The attorneys of Lowenthal & Abrams, Injury Attorneys, P.C. are committed to helping victims of drunk drivers seek justice in court. Contact us today if you or your loved one was hurt in a drunk driving car accident in Philadelphia due to the grossly negligent conduct of someone who chose to get behind the wheel while impaired.
Pennsylvania DUI Statistics
In 2013, 381 people died in Pennsylvania due to alcohol-related crashes. There were 200,049 alcohol-related crashes in the Commonwealth that year.
- Most of the victims who died were in the car being driven by the impaired driver.
- Someone died in a drunk driving crash every single day and 22 people were injured each day.
- On the average day, there were 30 car crashes related to driving while drunk in Philadelphia
- Most DUI incidents occur after dark (71%), often on the weekend (46%).
- The most dangerous holiday for driving under the influence in 2013 was Thanksgiving, with 194 crashes. The second most dangerous day is the day after Thanksgiving (180 crashes) and the third most dangerous is the day before Thanksgiving (172.) Other holidays where accidents are commonly caused by DUI include Memorial day (152), Labor day (146), the day before Memorial day (130), and the day after Memorial day (128.) Surprisingly, there were only 74 crashes on New Years and only 27 on New Years day.
- Impaired driving caused only 9% of car accidents, but 32% of car-related deaths. Someone in an alcohol-related crash is 4.9 times more likely to die than in a non-alcohol-related accident.
- Males are more likely than females to be involved in an auto accident while impaired, this is “3 out of 4 drinking drivers.”
- The age group with the greatest number of drunk driving accidents is 21-25 with 2,632 drivers. The second highest group is 26-30 with 1,627 drivers. The third group is a distant third, 31-35 with 1,188 drivers.
Prevent Drunk Driving
The best way to prevent a driver from causing a crash while drunk is to stop him from getting behind the wheel in the first place. Ask your friend not to drive, give up his keys, spend the night or offer to serve as the designated driver.
Unfortunately, some people are unwilling to stop when they are asked or told to do so. As a result, there are a number of other ways to stop someone from driving impaired.
- Passing laws. One of the reasons laws surrounding DUI have become so strict is because the goal is to make people understand that they will be punished severely for driving while drunk. Throughout the nation, a BAC (blood alcohol count) at or over .08% is unacceptable. For those under 21, no amount of alcohol is acceptable.
- Education. Many schools have partnered with states and organizations such as SADD and MADD to educate young people about the risks of drinking and driving.
- Liability for those who provide alcohol. Those who provide alcohol to drunk drivers can be held liable if it is clear that the person was too drunk to be served. This is something called social host or dram shop liability. What it means is that if someone is at your house, bar, restaurant or other facility, and you serve him when he is obviously inebriated, you may be held financially liable for any harm he does. The goal is to encourage those who provide or sell alcohol to do so responsibly.
- Providing rides. Some organizations provide rides on days when drunk driving is especially risky. Some bars, in order to avoid liability or simply because they believe it is the right thing to do, will provide cars home or call a taxi for an obviously impaired person.
- Call the police. Sometimes you have to save your friends from themselves. If your friend is driving drunk, it is better to get him off the road than to risk him killing himself or someone else.
Liability for DUI
For the sake of justice, drunk drivers sometimes need to be punished in civil courts as well as criminal courts. Otherwise victims and their families can face financial ruin because of someone else’s mistake. A knowledgeable attorney can help these families win compensation for their financial and emotional losses.
Car crashes due to driving while intoxicated not only provide for the usual damages such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses
- Property damage to your car
But you might also be eligible for punitive damages due to the bad conduct of the driver.
In addition, it is important that your attorney understand that there are sometimes other parties responsible if you are injured by someone who was drunk. As mentioned, social host liability and dram shop liability provide for liability in cases where someone who was clearly inebriated was provided with alcohol. Make certain you have a lawyer who will cross all of the “t”s and dot all of the “i”s in your injury claim.
Contact Us After a Drunk Driving Car Crash in Philadelphia
Our Pennsylvania drunk driving accident lawyers understand just how debilitating your injuries may be and the rippling effects they can have in all areas of your life. If you or a loved one has been injured by a drunk driver, contact the dui crash attorneys of Lowenthal & Abrams, Injury Attorneys, P.C. You should not be left to bear the financial burdens of a crash which was caused by another motorist’s negligence. We will fight to ensure that you are not.