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Federal government releases DUI figures

New York suffered 364 fatalities in drunk driving accidents involving a legally-impaired in 2013, according to figures released by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. For the United States, there was one death every 52 minutes, or 10,076 people, in drunk driving car accidents for that year.

As troubling as these figures are, fatalities in these accidents decreased in this country by 2.5 percent from one year earlier. Nonetheless, this fatal problem will likely remain a danger for pedestrians, motorists and passengers in New York.

The drivers in these accidents exceeded the legal limit of 0.08 BAC. Of these accidents, however, 68 percent of the drivers suffered even a greater impairment with a BAC of .15. In New York, 20 percent of these auto accidents involved a driver that exceeded this higher limit.

The NHTSA also reported that the estimated economic cost of these accidents in 2010, the latest year where figures are available, was $49.8 billion. These costs included decrease in productivity, workplace losses, legal expenses, medical and emergency services, insurance, congestion and property damage.

The highest number of drivers who were impaired in this country fell within the 21-to 24-age group. Thirty-three percent of drunk drivers were within this age group followed by drivers aged 25 to 34-years-old were 29 percent of these drivers. Two hundred children, 14 years-old and younger, died in these crashes. These younger victims included passengers, pedestrians and cyclists killed by legally-impaired drivers.

Most fatal accidents occurred at night which had four times the number of crashes. The highest number of legally-impaired drivers was highest among motorcyclists who were involved in 27 percent of accidents.

Victims of these accidents should seek prompt legal assistance help to assure that their rights are protected. Legal advice can help victims obtain damages for serious injuries and losses suffered in these accidents.

Source: National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, “Alcohol impaired driving-2013 data,” Accessed March 11, 2015