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Some at greater risk for drinking and driving than others

Drivers in Kentucky likely know that drinking and driving is illegal but do not have all the important safety information regarding this issue. The amount of U.S. adults that have admitted to driving while impaired by alcohol totals 112 million people every year, but only 1.4 million drivers were arrested for alcohol or drug related offenses in 2010. Since more people drive under the influence of alcohol than are caught yearly, this could be a reason 10,322 people died in 2012 due to crashes involving alcohol impairment.

Younger drivers are at greater risk for DUI accidents than older individuals. One out of every three drivers in 2012 involved in a fatal crash with a blood alcohol concentration level of .08 percent or greater was between 21 to 24 years old, and the 25 to 34 and 35 to 44 age groups had the next highest rates for fatal accidents.

Along with motorcyclists, those with prior DUI convictions are more likely to be involved in alcohol related crashes. Compared to those with no alcohol in their systems, those with a previous conviction were seven times more likely to be involved in fatal wrecks with a BAC of .08 percent or greater. Sobriety checkpoints and ignition interlock devices have proven useful when combating drunk driving, and enforcing current drinking laws and suspending drunk drivers' licenses could potentially further prevent fatal alcohol related crashes.

While some may be careful on the road, those who find themselves the victims of wrecks can suffer injuries through no fault of their own. When a car accident was caused by the negligence of someone else, one may file a personal injury claim to receive compensation for medical expenses related to the accident. Drivers who do not exercise a reasonable amount of caution could be responsible for one's injuries, and drunk driving is an example of negligent behavior.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Impaired Driving: Get the Facts", December 06, 2014

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