According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, some 2.5% of teens aged 12 to 17, 623,000 in all, suffer from an alcohol-related disorder. Teens who drink are not only breaking the law and damaging their health; they are also putting others at risk. The CDC has found that 5.5% of teens in New Jersey and the rest of the U.S. drive after drinking alcohol. Drunk driving is to blame for thousands of injuries and deaths.
Drunk drivers take the lives of more than 10,800 people and injure approximately 290,000 people every year in the United States, according to Mothers Against Drunk Driving. While families are out navigating the New Jersey roadways, they are driving alongside thousands of drunk drivers who have three or more prior drunk driving convictions. So, what is being done to limit the number of drunk drivers that are able to climb behind the wheel and commit another offense?
When people make the decision to still try and drive after they have consumed alcohol, they are putting everyone around them at instant risk of being injured or killed. This includes their own safety and that of their passengers and other motorists who are driving near them. Often, because they are incapacitated in some way, they do not recognize the seriousness of the decision they are making. This is why it is strongly encouraged that people in New Jersey make responsible plans for their transportation before they participate in parties where alcohol is present.
For the last several decades, New Jersey residents have seen and heard many public awareness campaigns highlighting the dangers of drunk driving and encouraging people to make alternative decisions that are wise and safe. Unfortunately, there remains a core of people unwilling to put the safety of others and even of themselves ahead of their immediate wishes. As a result, too many innocent people continue to die in accidents caused by drunk drivers.
If you are like many other people in New Jersey, you may have a few drinks when going out to dinner or spending a night out with friends. In these situations, you may have been told that designating a driver to stay sober is a good option, as that person will be able to drive everyone home safely. Yet, a study shows that even designated drivers may not stay sober during an evening of festivities and could compromise the safety of everyone they are driving home.
When you have been involved in an accident caused by a drunk driver in Allenhurst, your frustration over the negligence involved in the situation is understandable. Not only was the driver negligent in choosing to drive while drunk, but someone else may have also been so by providing them with the means to become drunk. Establishments licensed to serve alcohol should know the inherent risks involved with serving their patrons, which is why New Jersey has enacted its own dram shop law (which has been detailed on this blog in the past). Yet what about one who serves guests alcohol at a party or get-together? Many have come to us here at Escandon, Fernicola, Anderson, Covelli & McPherson asking if there is a way to hold such parties liable, as well.
For many motorists in New Jersey, the desire to stay safe while traveling is something most have in common. As such, many people do their part to make sure they are observing the rules of the road and allowing extra time for situations that could be dangerous if not observed. However, they cannot control the actions or decisions of other drivers who may not be as responsible. In these situations, sometimes tragic outcomes can happen despite the incident's having been entirely preventable.
It is no secret that drunk driving continues to be a problem around the nation and New Jersey is no exception. With lawmakers striving to pass stricter laws regarding how much people should be allowed to consume if they wish to continue to drive, the temptation to operate a vehicle after drinking still seems to badger a lot of people. While it is a person's responsibility to be accountable for their own decisions, perhaps people's willingness to watch out for their friends can also reduce the prevalence of drunk driving.
Drunk driving is against the law in all 50 states, but despite that, drunk driving accidents and fatalities continue to happen. This is especially true during the holiday season in New Jersey.
Most in Monmouth County likely understand that the decision to drink and drive is a personal one. Still, in the wake of a drunk driving accident, victims might rightly wonder how is that the drivers that hit them were allowed to reach the intoxicated states they were in in the first place. That may prompt further inquiry as to whether or not those who serve alcohol to drivers that cause accidents should share in the liability for the incident. Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drunk driving accidents result in over $44 billion in losses annually in the United States. Having other avenues of liability may help accident victims in recovering the compensation needed to adequately handle their expenses.