Prevention of drunk driving has clearly been a top priority for lawmakers and safety groups. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and other advocates have a strong national organization dedicated to encouraging people to always drive sober. Lawmakers have imposed strict penalties on those who drive while impaired and the National Transportation Safety Board is even urging states to lower the permissible blood alcohol concentration limit to .05 down from the current .08 limit.
Despite the fact that state lawmakers and safety organizations have worked hard to reduce drunk driving, the Centers for Disease Control report that 10,000 people still die each year due to collisions caused by impaired motorists. A recent study conducted by Boston University and the University of Minnesota sheds some light on why so many drunk driving deaths keep occurring: the policies that could perhaps best prevent these collisions are largely very unpopular. This makes it difficult for lawmakers to pass regulations and rules that have a meaningful impact on bringing down the number of deaths caused by alcohol use.
Ultimately, regardless of what the specific laws are, drivers have a basic duty of care while on the road. Driving while impaired is considered unreasonably careless or negligent and a drunk driver can thus be sued or have a claim made against him if he causes a crash while intoxicated. An Atlanta drunk driving accident lawyer can help those who have been hurt by someone who is drunk to take legal action.
Taking a Close Look at Policies to Prevent Atlanta Drunk Driving Deaths
According to the MinnPost, experts recently reviewed and ranked 29-different policies related to alcohol use. Evidence-based research was done to rank the policies in terms of how effectively they could prevent fatalities or illnesses resulting from impaired driving.
Unfortunately, it turns out that many of the policies that have enjoyed broad support and that have passed in recent years are not all that effective at preventing impaired driving. In fact, between 1999 and 2011, there was a “big increase” in the number of policies passed that were considered to be less effective.
Policies that have been widely accepted and adopted generally focus on the reduction of underage drinking and driving. Other laws that have passed in recent years in states throughout the U.S. also include instituting graduated driver’s licenses for young people; and holding adult hosts liable under some circumstances for the action taken by partygoers who leave events after having too much to drink.
Researchers however, found that policies that have been proven to work better at reducing alcohol-related fatalities have found little traction. For example, restricting where alcohol can be bought or raising taxes on alcohol can make a bigger impact on bringing the death toll down.
While these policies may continue to remain unpopular because of the importance of balancing freedom and liberty with protecting public safety, drivers need to remember that it is up to them to stay sober and avoid endangering others. If a driver gets drunk and causes a crash, victims should call an experienced attorney for help.
The Atlanta car accident lawyers at Sammons & Carpenter, P.C. can represent you after an injury in a motor vehicle crash. Call today at (404) 814-8949 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.