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| Shapiro, Appleton & Washburn

Earlier this week, the annual ‘Drunk Driving. Over The Limit. Under Arrest.’ campaign went into effect, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The effort, headed by U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, will crack down on drunk drivers even more so than in the past.

This year, a ‘No Refusal’ strategy is in place in many states. With this policy, police officers will have access to ‘on call’ judges, who can issue warrants for blood samples on the spot from drunk drivers who refuse to take a breath test.

We applaud LaHood in his effort to stop drunk driving. Driving under the influence is still one of the main causes for car accidents and serious injury/fatality caused by car accidents. While most people know the dangers of drunk driving, the statistics are appalling. For example, one person dies every 45 minutes due to a drunk driving accident.

The statistics of injuries and fatalities due to accidents involving alcohol are even worse during the holiday season. With so many celebrations and parties, drunk driving accidents with injuries occur much more frequently. Accidents with injuries involving impaired drivers increase significantly on Christmas and New Year’s in particular, two holidays that are fast approaching. The NHTSA shows that in 2005, 160 people lost their lives on Christmas due to accidents involving an impaired drivers. On New Year’s of 2005, 193 people lost their lives due to the same kind of accidents.

During this holiday season, we encourage all drivers to be responsible. Drunk driving accidents not only cause serious injury. They often result in fatality, and with that pain and heartache for the family and friends involved. There are many things you can help do to help prevent drunk driving, like keeping an eye on your guests if you are hosting a party or making sure you have a designated driver or taxi fare before you venture out.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a driver who was under the influence of alcohol, please call our law firm for a free, no-hassle consultation.


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