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Louisiana ranks ninth in nation in drunk driving deaths

The Fourth of July is a time to celebrate our nation. People will go to parades or stay up late to watch fireworks, and many will also go to backyard barbecues and neighborhood block parties. And, at these events, many people will be drinking alcohol. Some might even say that having a cold beer or other alcoholic beverage on the Fourth of July is a tradition for them. However, some of these drinkers will make the dangerous decision to drive while intoxicated. This presents a hazard not just to them, but also to everyone else on the road.

In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that every 50 minutes there is one traffic fatality where alcohol was a factor. Moreover, the consumer research company Value Penguin reports that Louisiana ranks ninth in the nation in fatal auto accidents involving drunk drivers. According to Value Penguin, our state had five drunk driving fatalities for every 100,000 residents. In addition, 30 percent of all traffic deaths in the state involved drunk drivers, and 70 percent of drunk driving deaths involved those with a blood alcohol content that was two times the legal limit.

This study used information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's data on crashes involving drunk driving. The NHTSA defined drunk driving as those who had a BAC of 0.08 or more. These numbers were then compared to the population of each state.

Drunk driving can be seen as a breach of a driver's duty of care to others on the road. When a driver breaches their duty of care and causes a car accident that injures or kills another person, that driver may be held responsible for the crash. The pain victims of drunk driving accidents suffer is only amplified by the fact that such crashes are entirely preventable had the drunk driver been sober instead. Those who lose a loved one in a drunk driving accident or those who have been injured in one may want to determine if they can pursue a personal injury lawsuit to recoup some of what they lost.

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