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Is Drunk Driving Worse Now Than Ever Before?

May 14, 2020

Drunk driving has become a simple fact of our day to day life. No one can escape a drunk driver on the loose, and while many have serious injuries, others never walk away. If you were hurt, even during a world-wide event that seems it should deter drunk drivers, you need a Columbia car accident attorney.

Since as long ago as the 1940s, when more people started owning vehicles, people began driving drunk. It’s something that many organizations fight against daily, but still, it happens. In fact, in 2018, DUI crashes made up about 29% of all traffic crash fatalities. That’s nearly a third of all people who die in crashes are victims of drunk drivers.

Drunk Driving with Closed Bars and Clubs

While COVID-19 has caused a stir across many industries, impacted many people, and burdened many families, there are a few silver linings. One of the few good things to come from this pandemic is that with so many closed businesses that serve alcohol, there are fewer drunk drivers on the streets.

Columbia is well-known for its party scene, and what comes with that is a high-volume of drunk drivers. Unfortunately, that hasn’t stopped everyone from driving under the influence. The closed bars and clubs now are proof that while many people are staying home instead of driving, some people will drive drunk anyway.

Home Drinkers v. Going Out

In 2018 there were over 10,000 deaths from drunk driving crashes, and that number is largely from people going out. Home drinkers are known to drink more and can cause more serious damage when they do decide to drive. Often people drinking at home feel safer because they have nowhere to go. Unfortunately, some people just feel the need to drive and put other people in danger.

Now, people who drink outside of a residence, at clubs or bars have a different frame. First, there are dram shop laws that could put a business as responsible for a DUI. That causes many establishments to cut people off or call them rideshare to ensure they get home without causing trouble. Second, there is the knowledge of needing to drive beforehand.

Essentially, when people go out, they know they will drink and will have to drive. Many people now use Uber to get around. Or, they will assign a “DD” to help them travel safely. Rideshare services have helped drop the volume over the years. It’s even safe to say that more conscientious business owners have helped reduce the number of drunk driving crashes.

1990 – The All-Time High

When looking through the years, the last few have shown slow but steady improvement in the way of drunk driving. 1990 was the peak of drunk driving accidents in both volume and the percentage of traffic fatality associations. All too often, people believe that this problem is continuing to get worse. However, through recent decades we’ve seen the impact of MADD, DADD, and other organizations.

Organizations that bring awareness to drunk driving are only one portion of the impact, however. Judges who award punitive damages to victims of drunk drivers and harsher handling of offenders is also helping to reduce the volume of drunk driving accidents.

Downward Trends on Drunk Driving Crashes

The downward trend is a good thing, but any let-up in attention or focus on bringing down the volume of drunk crashes can stop that trend. When you’re behind the wheel, always be on the lookout for people that still manage to drive drunk even in today’s conditions and level of awareness. Getting involved as the victim of a drunk driving crash can help build awareness too.

Enlisting a Columbia Car Accident Attorney for Your Claim

As a victim of a drunk driver, you may have options. Not only do you have the opportunity legally, but to aid your financial recovery as well. Often victims don’t look to legal avenues for a sense of justice, but as a means to fuel their recovery. The medical bills, property damage, and time lost at work are all matters that you can’t ignore when it comes to handling your recovery.

At Connell Law, our team comes together to help the victims of these drunk drivers fight. We know that you don’t want to worry about putting together a case or a claim, so we’ll handle it for you. Call Connell Law in Columbia, SC, to speak with a qualified and experienced Columbia drunk driver car accident lawyer.