Accidents due to drunk drivers can cause serious injuries and may even result in death. Georgia law takes driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol very seriously and the penalties for driving drunk can be very severe. According to the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, in 2008 Georgia had 1,493 traffic fatalities, with 416 of those being alcohol related. That means that more than one quarter of all Georgia traffic fatalities are alcohol related.
Out of the 159 counties in George, forty-four reported no alcohol fatalities in 2008. The counties with the highest number of fatalities were Fulton, Gwinnett, DeKalb, and Cobb with 30, 24, 19, and 18 alcohol related fatalities, respectively. The report indicates that the number of alcohol related fatalities remained steady from the period from 2004 to 2008.
The Governor’s office acknowledges that driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a problem in Georgia. In the period from 1994 to 2008, an average of 406.5 alcohol related deaths occurred per year, which represented about 1 out of every four roadway fatality in the state.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2008:
- 16% of all traffic fatalities involving people under 14 occurred in crashes involving alcohol
- The rate of alcohol impairment was for times higher for fatal crashes that occurred at night rather than in the day
- Drivers aged 21 to 24 represented the highest percentage of drivers involved in fatal crashes with a BAC level of 0.08 or higher.
- The percentage of drivers with a BAC of 0.08 or more was highest among motorcycle riders.
- Those drivers involved in fatal crashes with a BAC of 0.08 or greater were eight times more likely to have had a prior conviction for DUI.
The statistics make clear that DUI related fatalities are a serious problem in the state of Georgia. Drivers who drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol can be prosecuted and subjected to criminal sanctions such as jail time or fines. In addition, a drunk driver can be held civilly liable for any injuries they cause by the injured parties or their families. If you have been injured by a drunk driver, you may be entitled to significant compensation. In order to schedule a free initial consultation with a Coweta County DUI Injury lawyer, call the Law Offices of Shane Smith at (770) 487-8999 today.