THE INJURY LADY SAYS: “Let’s talk about drinking and driving.” Not the lightest topic to discuss; however, I think everyone should be aware of drinking and driving statistics. They are both depressing and shocking. But if you are not armed with information, you cannot make an informed decision and you cannot teach your friends and families to make an informed decision.
So what are the drinking and driving stats? In Texas, in 2013, 1,089 were KILLED in motor vehicle traffic crashes where the driver was drinking and driving and under the influence of alcohol. This accounted for 32.2% of the total number of people killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes for the year. (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot-info/trf/crash_statistics/2013/01-2013.pdf)
Another 6,241 motor vehicle accidents involving drinking and driving with alcohol were considered serious and resulted in serious injuries to 8,843 people. (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot-info/trf/crash_statistics/2013/37-2013.pdf)
So what does that mean? Nearly ONE-THIRD of all car crashes that resulted in deaths were related to drunk driving. That number is staggering. Don’t be one. Don’t be this number. Don’t contribute to these statistics.
People, the holidays are here. I don’t believe it is any secret that the holidays tend to see an increase in drinking and driving. Keep these numbers in mind when you go to your holiday parties. Don’t be that person.
I have represented clients on both sides of these drinking and driving situations.
As you all know, I am primarily a personal injury lawyer here in Abilene, Texas, but I have the occasional criminal case that I will take on and I consult on several a week. Either way, it is rare that a week goes by that I do not have someone in my office who has either been charged with drinking and driving / DWI / DUI or has been injured or lost a loved one due to a drinking and driving related incident.
With respect to the personal injury cases, it almost never fails that these are the worst to handle. I have cried with my clients, I have hurt for my clients, and I feel an insurmountable amount of rage and sympathy for my clients who have suffered from the hands of someone who just simply chooses to make a reckless, selfish, lazy, and frankly, stupid decision. No matter how much sympathy I have, I cannot take away their pain and I cannot do a single thing to bring back their loved ones. And more importantly, I can’t turn back time and tell the drunk not to drive.
If you get nothing else from this drinking and driving post, get this…
IT IS NOT WORTH IT. Even if you are not the one who is injured/killed, or related to them…you do not want to be the drunk that caused that accident. You do not want to wake up in the drunk tank the next day and realize that you may have taken someone else’s life. You also don’t want to wake up in the drunk tank the next day and realize that you may have risked your career, your family, and your sanity because you have to deal with the consequences of a DWI charge. Again, IT IS NOT WORTH IT!
Call a cab, folks. It is not hard. Nearly every year I see the cab companies offering deals and freebies to drive people home who have had too much to drink. I see bars and clubs doing the same thing. Keep 10 bucks in your pocket for your cab ride. There is not one single reason for you to get behind the wheel. Not one.