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Category: Motor Vehicle Accidents

News, safety and legal information for San Diego motor vehicle accident victims

As the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Labor Day Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest. Campaign continues (the DUI crackdown began on August 20 nationwide and will last until September 6), the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released new data on August 25 revealing that one in five U.S. drivers has admitted to drinking and driving. This data indicates that 8% of all motorists, which amounts to approximately 17 million individuals, have operated a vehicle while drunk at least once during the past year. Considering that the Governors Highway Safety Association notes that 12,000 people nationwide were killed in accidents in 2008 involving drivers or motorcyclists with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher, the need for emphasizing the consequences of drunk driving to the public cannot be stressed enough.

The NHTSA drunk driving survey shows that an estimated one in five U.S. drivers have driven within two hours of consuming alcohol within the past year. Even so, four out of five Americans consider drunk driving a “major threat” to their own personal safety as well as to that of their families. The study also revealed a significant trend of drinking and driving among young motorists, especially in young males.

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A head-on car accident in San Diego close to Qualcomm Stadium resulted in two drivers sustaining several broken bones. According to 10News, one of the injured motorists, a 70 year old man, lost control of his Ford pickup truck as he was headed westbound. As a consequence, the man suddenly changed direction and crossed the roadway, striking an oncoming small passenger Dodge Stratus being driven by a 25 year old man.

The impact was so great that firefighters had to free both men from their smashed vehicles. The older man endured rib, hand, foot, and thigh bone fractures and the younger man required emergency care for breaks in both of his femurs. While it is unclear at this time why the pickup truck driver lost control and veered into oncoming traffic in the opposite lane, distracted driving or driver fatigue may have played a role.

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The Associated Press recently reported that three teenagers between the ages of 14 and 17 have been seriously injured and are in critical condition after being struck by a drunk driver while walking on the sidewalk. The motorist then crashed into a San Diego restaurant and injured two adults sitting inside the establishment. Accidents like these should never occur in the first place.

With thousands of motor vehicle accidents taking place throughout any given year, motorists and pedestrians are already at enough risk of being involved in an accident due to distracted driving and other causes without drunk driving factoring in as well. Approximately 452,595 vehicle collisions were reported in the state of California in 2008. The California Highway Patrol reports that there were 104 alcohol-related wrongful death auto accidents and 2,033 alcohol-related injury collisions in San Diego County in 2008.

It is no secret that the best way to help prevent drunk driving auto accidents in San Diego and throughout the country is to simply not drive while under the influence of alcohol. However, many drivers continue to believe that being “buzzed” does not qualify as being under the influence, and they are wrong. There is no arguing against the fact that alcohol impairs a person’s ability to safety operate a vehicle. Encourage your family and friends to always designate a sober driver or to take a taxi instead of driving after consuming any amount of alcohol.

As a highly skilled San Diego auto accident attorney who has dedicated years to protecting the rights of those injured in a wide range of accidents, including motor vehicle collisions and pedestrian accidents, Steven Elia can help you hold negligent parties responsible. Call 619-444-2244 today for a free consultation and to discuss the details of your case with experienced lawyer Steven Elia.