Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over: Labor Day Edition
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has recently issued a press release urging motorists to drive sober for the upcoming holiday weekend and all year long. This year’s campaign isn’t just focused on the personal costs and human toll of drunk driving, it’s also focused on the societal and economic impact of drunk driving.
Drunk driving crashes kill over 10,000 people each year, across the U.S. Holiday weekends are notorious for an increase in alcohol-impaired crashes. In 2012, just during the Labor Day weekend, 147 people were killed in crashes involving impaired drivers or motorcycle riders. One in three traffic fatalities occurs in crashes involving alcohol-impaired drivers. This means that one-third of all crash deaths are totally preventable.
In addition to the human toll of drunk driving, the economic impacts of driving under the influence cost Americans billions of dollars each year.
Direct and Indirect Economic Impacts of DUI’s
• In 2010, crashes involving alcohol-impaired drivers cost 47 billion in direct economic impacts.
• On average, that’s $152 per person, across the U.S.
• When overall harm to society due to loss of life and quality of life are included, the figure shoots up to $195 billion.
• The average cost of a minor injury involved with an alcohol-impaired car crash is $22,000, with additional losses related to the quality of life totaling $25,000.
• Direct economic impacts and additional quality-of-life costs increase dramatically depending on the severity of the injury.
Plan a Safe and Happy Holiday Weekend
The best way to enjoy the holiday weekend is to make a great plan before the festivities begin. Planning ahead is absolutely critical in making sure you have a safe ride home lined up, if you plan on drinking. It could be as simple as pre-programming a cab service’s number into your phone. You could arrange a ride with a designated driver in advance. No matter what your plan is or how the evening changes, don’t get behind the wheel. Ask a bartender or friend to find you a safe ride home. The team at Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, Inc. wishes everybody a safe and happy holiday weekend.