Most Tennessee drivers know that drunk driving kills, but they may not realize just how serious the problem is. Across the United States, one person dies every 51 minutes in a motor vehicle accident caused by an alcohol-impaired driver, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Some 10,322 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes in 2012, the CDC says. This number represents a third of all people killed in motor vehicle accidents that same year. More than 1.4 million motorists were arrested for drunk driving in 2010. Drivers between the ages of 21 and 24 accounted for a third of the crashes in 2012; the percentage decreased as the age of the drivers involved went up. Motorcyclists between 40 and 44 had the highest death rate in alcohol-related motorcycle crashes.
The CDC says there are some things drivers can do to reduce drunk driving accidents. The first step is that motorists should not drive if they've been drinking, and car keys should be taken away from those who are drunk. The CDC also recommends more stringent enforcing of drunk driving laws, plus lowering the legal blood alcohol content level from .08 percent to .05 percent. They also recommend mandatory blood testing of drivers involved in injury accidents,
Unfortunately, these and other measures may not be enough to keep drunk drivers off the road. Car crash victims who suffer injuries as a result of a motorist driving drunk may be eligible for compensation through a personal injury claim. This compensation can be for present and future medical expenses and wages as well as pain and suffering. If the negligent driver did not have liability auto insurance, a personal injury attorney may be able to find other sources for compensation.