Driving while impaired is a serious offense in the state of Florida. The National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) recently reported that one death related to alcohol occurs every 52 minutes in the U.S. They also recently reported the largest increase in traffic deaths since they began recording them.
Fatal road accidents are on the rise
The number of motor vehicle accidents taking place all across the U.S. has been on a steady rise over the last few years. Florida is among the 44 states that have contributed to a 10.5% increase in the total number of deaths. The figure rose to 42,915 in 2021 from the previous total of 38,824 that was recorded in 2020. This is a trend that worries experts.
Drunk driving accidents are responsible for over 10,000 deaths each year. One-third of these deaths can be traced to the irresponsible use of alcohol. The number of deaths was actually down for a while in 2019. But since the end of the lockdown, more people are on the roads and behaving less responsibly than ever.
A total of 26.8% of drivers that were seriously or fatally injured in a crash in 2020 had alcohol in their bloodstream. During the same year, over 230 children were killed in crashes caused by drunk drivers. 68% of these accidents happened at night while another 28% took place during the daytime hours.
Drinking and driving costs the state billions
It should be noted that deaths and other injuries related to traffic accidents cost over $44 billion on an annual basis. Much of this goes to repair state and personal property that is damaged or destroyed in the course of an accident. Much of the rest goes to cover medical procedures, insurance bills, and funeral expenses.
Fatal crashes were on the rise among all segments of the population. Drivers aged 35 to 44 saw their number of fatal accidents rise by 15%. Drivers over the age of 65 saw a 14% rise in their own crash stats. These are trends that, unfortunately, seem fated to continue.