With Labor Day weekend quickly approaching, you can bet that drunk driving is on the forefront of the minds of law enforcement agents. Afterall, this holiday weekend often proves to be one of the deadliest throughout the year when it comes to car accidents. According to the Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood, “Drunk driving is deadly, it’s against the law, and unfortunately, it’s still a problem,” he said in this news article.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Commission conducted a telephone survey of 7,000 drivers, aged 16 and older in 2008. Out of those people surveyed, 8 percent admitted to driving under the influence of alcohol and estimated that their blood alcohol level was above the legal limit. They admitted to doing this at least once within a 12 month period. As if that wasn’t enough, almost a quarter of men between the ages of 21 and 24 claim they rode in a car with someone they believed was above the legal alcohol limit as well.
If this data is extrapolated, one can estimate that roughly 17 million drivers have driven impaired in the last year. As a personal injury attorney in Bellevue, I find this number to be frightening. In order to combat these statistics, the NHTSA has funded a $13 million advertising campaign to warn drivers not to get behind the wheel if they are impaired.