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Impaired Driving Accidents Spike During the Summer Holidays

Drinking alcohol significantly impairs a driver’s ability to safely operate a vehicle. It slows reaction time, lowers alertness, and impairs judgment.

In 2012, more than 10,000 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This amounts to one fatality every 51 minutes. The statistics are just as sobering in California. In total, 1,169 people were killed in alcohol-involved crashes in California in 2012, which represented a 7.3 percent increase over the prior year.

While drunk driving is a safety concern year round, accidents tend to increase during certain times of year. Around certain holidays, many drivers have too much to drink and fail to plan for alternative transportation before the festivities begin. Below are the five most dangerous holidays to be on the road, three of which takes place during the summer months:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Independence Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving

Under California law, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher. Drivers charged with drinking and driving face significant penalties, including financial penalties, license revocation, and jail time.

When drunk drivers cause San Diego car accidents, injury victims and their families are entitled to pursue compensation through a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. Even when prosecutors are seeking criminal charges, a drunk driver can still be held financially accountable for his or her reckless driving. Compensation may include payments for medical expenses, lost wages, physical impairment, and other forms of pain and suffering.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a California car accident caused by an impaired driver, don’t hesitate to contact a personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage for a free consultation. Relying on more than 30 years of legal experience, we are dedicated to protecting the rights of California injury victims.