Salt Lake City, UT- Drunk driving accidents touch thousands of lives every day and account for nearly a third of fatal crashes nationwide. In Utah, drunk driving and other reckless driving habits are responsible for hundreds of deaths annually. That’s a sad fact, but there is some good news: Traffic collisions in the Beehive State, including drunk driving crashes, have steadily declined in recent years.
Fatal Accidents Declining in Utah
Typically, the 100 days between Memorial Day and Labor Day are the deadliest day on the roads in Utah and across the nation. It’s a heavy road travel season and is what safety agencies refer to as the 100 deadliest days of summer. During this time of year, law enforcement agencies in every state see a dramatic spike in traffic crashes and road fatalities. That is due in part to an increase in traffic and more aggressive and impaired drivers on the road.
According to the Utah State police, there were 87 road fatalities in the state during the 2017 summer travel season, representing a 13 percent decline. Last year, over the same period there were 94 deaths, the Deseret News reports. That is seven fewer lives taken and fewer families forced to endure the pain of losing a loved one.
The Deseret News reports if trends in traffic crashes hold on this pace, road deaths in Utah could total 280 by the end of 2017. That would represent a significant decline over 2016 when 329 people were killed.
Facts about Utah Drunk Driving Crashes
Drunk driving accounts for 13 percent of traffic fatalities, making it the second leading cause of traffic fatalities behind speeding and failure to wear a safety belt, data from the Utah Department of Highway Safety shows.
More drunk driving deaths occurred on Pioneer Day in 2015 than any other holiday, according to Utah’s Zero Fatalities agency.
The second deadliest holiday in Utah is Independence Day, followed by Thanksgiving.
In 2015, there were 2,021 alcohol-related crashes in Utah.
Law Enforcement Programs Aim to Reduce Deadly Crashes
Seven lives saved is a win, but authorities are hoping their efforts save even more lives. The state began the Zero Fatalities initiative which aims to reduce traffic deaths by raising awareness of the dangers of reckless driving. The program targets motorists of all ages through demonstrations, ad campaigns, seminars and increased traffic patrols. The initiative also includes stricter enforcement of Utah’s drunk driving and seat belt laws through the Click It or Ticket campaign and the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over program.
Despite being acutely aware of the dangers, many people drive while impaired by drugs or alcohol everyday. In a 2014 survey conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Agency (SAMHSA), 10.1 million people admitted to driving under the influence of illicit drugs in the past. Additionally, in a 2013 survey from SAMHSA, 28.7 million people admitted to driving after having too many drinks.
Speak with a Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer in Utah
There is no excuse for drunk driving, especially when motorists have plenty of alternatives to endangering the lives of others. If your life has been turned into chaos because of a drunken or drugged driver, you have the right to hold a drunk driver accountable for harming you or a loved one.
Because drunk driving accidents are typically high-impact crashes, they often leave victims with severe injuries, including:
Traumatic brain injuries
Any of the injuries listed above will result in exorbitant medical costs, rehabilitation, lost wages and other economic damages. If you are the victim of a drunk driver in Utah, USAttorneys recommends you contact an accident lawyer. We recommend you call the personal injury lawyers at the Ralph Petty Law Firm (801) 220-0900 and set up a case evaluation. Attorney Ralph Petty has helped victims of impaired driving crashed for three decades will do what it takes to make your case a success. His legal team will give your case the attention it deserves.