Drunk driving dangers in Placer County

With the active wine industry in Temecula, area residents should take care to guard against drunk drivers at all times.

March and April are prime spring break months and that can be a good time for people to be reminded of the dangers that drunk driving poses to others. Temecula area residents enjoy a high quality of life but that cannot eliminate the risk of being involved in a drunk driving accident.

In the blink of an eye, lives can be forever changed and even lost altogether. It only takes one person to make the choice to operate a motor vehicle after drinking to make that happen. To understand how serious this problem really is in California, a look at statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration can be helpful.

NHTSA data tells the story

According to the NHTSA records for the year 2013, Riverside County experienced the 84 deaths from drunk driving accidents. That was the second highest number of such deaths in the state of California. Los Angeles County had the most fatalities from accidents involving alcohol with 174.

Three other southern California counties rounded out the top five for the greatest number of these deaths. In San Bernadino, San Diego and Orange Counties, 71, 57 and 54 vehicular fatalities respectively were attributed due to impaired driving crashes.

The Century Council also highlights the influence of exceptionally high blood alcohol levels in serious crashes. Drivers with BAC levels beyond 0.14 percent were involved in 73 percent of drunk driving fatalities in California in 2012.

News reports back up the statistics

From devastating injuries to fatalities, the impact of drunk driving is seen in news stories. Some recent reports include the following:

  • A CBS8.com article gave details on a crash in which a woman sustained injuries to her leg and head after running into a bridge support in North San Diego County. She was arrested on DUI charges and was found with multiple open containers of alcohol in her vehicle.
  • A 27-year old woman who was drunk according to a kesq.com story caused her own death in a car crash. An 8-year old boy was also in her vehicle but is reported to have sustained only minor injuries.
  • According to a Temecula Patch.com story, a bench warrant has been issued for the arrest of a man arrested for drunk driving who allegedly stole a police vehicle and later failed to show up in court.

A California lawmaker is pushing to have the state's DUI laws expanded to include boating as well as driving.

Victims in any type of vehicle accident including those caused by drunk drivers should always know they deserve help. Talking to an attorney after these incidents is recommended.

Keywords: drunk driving, accident, injury