How Many People Die in Drunk Driving Car Accidents Every Year?

If you or your loved one have been seriously injured in a Charlotte drunk driving accident, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Most people are aware that there are criminal penalties for drunk driving in North Carolina. However, victims of drunk driving accidents often have a right to bring a civil personal injury lawsuit against the drunk driver. Victims may be able to hold the drunk driver accountable for the injuries caused by the car accident.

Drunk driving is the number two cause of car accidents in the United States, behind distracted driving. Even though more car accidents are caused by distracted driving than drunk driving, drunk driving accidents are statistically more deadly. When a driver consumes alcohol, it inhibits his or her decision making, motor skills and affects brain chemistry.

Despite an extensive media campaign to prevent drunk driving, drunk driving accidents continue to occur in North Carolina and throughout the United States. We will discuss the prevalence of drunk driving accidents and the types of injuries they cause below.

Drunk Driving Deaths in North Carolina

In 2019, North Carolina was ranked seventh for its DUI severity score. The DUI severity score is calculated using the arrest rate for DUIs per 100,000. The DUI severity score is also based on the DUI fatality rate per 100,000 people. North Carolina had 421 DUI fatalities that year. The study demonstrated that the South is the deadliest region when it comes to drunk driving. Additionally, 7 out of 12 states in the South had the highest DUI death rates in the nation. 29% of all motor vehicle fatalities in the state in 2018 were related to drunk driving.

Drunk Driving Car Accident Statistics Nationwide

According to the CDC, 29 people in the United States die every day in a car accident that involved a drunk driver. One drunk driving death occurs every 50 minutes in the United States. Additionally, the cost of alcohol-related car accidents totals over $44 million. The following drunk driving statistics shed light on the dangers of drunk driving:

  • Over 25% of all traffic-related deaths are directly related to drunk driving
  • Approximately 800 people are injured in a drunk driving car accident every day in the United States
  • When drivers have a blood alcohol content of over .10%, they are seven times more likely to be involved in a fatal car accident than a sober driver
  • Young people between 21 and 24 account for one-third of all drivers arrested for DUIs
  • 32% of victims who died in a drunk driving car accident were passengers in 2017
  • 10,497 people died as a result of drunk driving car accidents in 2016. That year, drunk driving fatalities accounted for 20% of all car accident-related deaths in the United States.
  • In 2016, 1,233 car accident deaths of children between the ages of 0 and 14 years old occurred. Of those deaths, 17% involved a drunk driver.
  • Law enforcement officers arrested over 1 million drivers in 2016 who were suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. These figures only represent 1% of the 111 million episodes of drunk driving that U.S. adults self-report.
  • Alcohol is not the only cause of impaired driving accidents. Legal and illegal drugs other than alcohol account for 16% of car accidents.
  • The use of marijuana has also increased in recent years. Experts estimate that 13% of drivers during the night or on the weekends have marijuana in their system.
  • Marijuana users who are driving are 25% more likely to be involved in a car accident than drivers with no evidence of marijuana use. However, age and gender can also account for the increased crash risk among marijuana users.
Deaths Caused by Drunk Drivers

Between 2006 and 2016, the National Highway Transportation Safety Association reported over 10,000 deaths related to drunk driving car accidents and impaired drivers. In 2007, 22% of all 56,000 fatalities on American roads were caused by drunk drivers. In 2010, nearly 33,000 fatalities due to drunk driving occurred. In other cases, drunk drivers cause fatal accidents, but they do not have the necessary blood alcohol content to face criminal charges. In 2017, nearly 2,000 people died in alcohol-related traffic fatalities under these circumstances.

Contact an Experienced DUI Car Accident Lawyer Today

If you or your loved one has been injured in a Charlotte DUI accident, Arnold & Smith, PLLC, is here to help. Contact us today at 704-370-2828 to schedule your free initial consultation.

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