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Far too many injuries and losses stem from drunk driving-related accidents

The vast majority of residents in Rhode Island must rely on a car or truck for transportation. For many, driving becomes second nature and most people likely don't think twice about getting in or behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. In truth, motor vehicles can be extremely dangerous and, in 2013 alone, 65 people in the state lost their lives in fatal accidents.

Traffic accidents and the resulting fatalities may be attributable to various driving errors including speeding, distracted driving and failure to yield. Additionally, a significant percentage of traffic fatalities stem from accidents in which at least one driver is determined to have alcohol in his or her system.

Despite the fact that drinking and driving is illegal and the associated penalties harsh, far too many drivers choose to get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle after having one, two or more drinks. Alcohol inhibits a driver's ability to take-in and process information and also adversely affects a driver's reaction time, thereby increasing the likelihood that he or she will cause or be involved in an accident.

According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, during 2014 37 percent of the state's traffic fatalities involved drivers with a BAC of .08 or higher. Additionally, many more drivers and passengers were seriously injured in accidents caused by drunk drivers. For the individuals and families who have suffered injury and loss due to the acts of a drunk driver, it's important to consult with an attorney.

In addition to criminal action, a drunk driver may also face civil action in the form of a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. Individuals and families who choose to take legal action may be able to recover compensation related to their injuries and losses. An attorney who handles personal injury matters can answer questions and provide strong legal advocacy.

Source: Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Highway Loss Data Institute," General Statistics: Rhode Island," Oct. 13, 2015

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