During the holidays, drunk driving accidents see a large spike in frequency due to holiday parties and social events that involve the consumption of alcohol. This year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is cracking down on drunk driving by releasing a new mobile app that will let users who have been drinking find a safe ride home. The app will work by finding the location of the person using it, and will then dial a friend or taxi to come pick them up.
As part of the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign, the NHTSA is attempting to lower the rate of drunk driving accidents during the end of year festivities. By making use of mobile technology, the SaferRide app will help users find alternatives to getting behind the wheel. The app will be available for Android and Apple devices.
Does Law Enforcement Coordinate with the Department of Transportation?
In December of 2013, 733 people died in drunk driving accidents, the lowest number compared to other months that year. NHTSA officials are attempting to keep December in last place again this year, with their annual campaign to stop alcohol related car accidents.
This year, the Driver Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign will start on December 15 and end on January 1. More than 10,000 police departments and law enforcement agencies will take part in the crackdown by patrolling the roads for drunk drivers.
New Jersey will also take part in the nationwide campaign, and 165 police departments will be setting up checkpoints and high-saturation patrols throughout the state. During the same campaign last year, New Jersey law enforcement made 1,575 driving while intoxicated arrests.
What Are the Penalties For Drunk Drivers?
In 2013, drunk driving deaths declined by 2.5 percent, but still killed 10,076 people. National campaigns to reduce the numbers of deaths and catastrophic injuries from drunk driving are still needed.
Many drunk drivers who are pulled over and arrested will face criminal charges that include heavy fines, a driver’s license suspension and imprisonment for up to 30 days. Penalties vary depending on whether or not a person is a repeat offender. In New Jersey, and nationwide, a person is guilty of drunk driving if he or she operates a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or greater.
Drunk drivers who hit and injure someone can face civil lawsuits for damages. Car accidents can cause traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries, both of which often require a lifetime of care. Drunk drivers can expect to help pay for the lifetime costs of care for the people they hit and injure.
Spevack Law Firm is dedicated to providing the best representation for clients who have been wrongfully injured due to the negligent actions of others. If you want to find out more about what we can do to help you, please visit our Facebook and Twitter pages.
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Did You Know? In 2013, one person died every 52 minutes from a drunk driving accident.
You can read more about the NHTSA campaign to crack down on drunk driving by visiting its website.