09/22/2015 // 1-800 Car Wreck // (press release)
Recently in Texas, a new law aimed at curbing drunken driving rates in the state went into effect. The law, signed by Texas Governor Gregg Abbott in June, makes it a requirement for drunk driving offenders to install an ignition interlock on their vehicles in order to regain their driving privileges after an arrest.
Source: KXII Report “New drunk driving law takes effect in Texas”
“Ensuring the safety of those on Texas’ roadways is of utmost importance, which is why I was proud to sign this bill into law,” said Governor Abbott. “The implementation of this law is an important step in creating a safer driving experience for all residents and visitors to the Lone Star State.”
Anti-drunk driving organization MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) applauded the passage of the measure, with National President Colleen Sheehey-Church saying to the news source, “On Tuesday, MADD celebrates a much-needed improvement to Texas’ drunk driving law as we head into the busy Labor Day weekend… As we remind everyone to Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over, we are relieved to add Texas to the growing list of states that have taken action to protect residents and visitors from the 100 percent preventable crime of drunk driving.”
Houston based personal injury lawyer Amy Witherite of the Eberstein Witherite LLP firm is also among those who see the passage of the law as a much needed weapon in the fight to reduce incidents of drunk driving in Texas saying “hopefully we will soon see a significant decline in the number of accident injuries and fatalities linked to this type of reckless driving behavior across the state.” The attorney says she has represented a number of clients who have been affected by the careless actions of someone who drove under the influence of alcohol in Houston.
Surprising Facts About Drunk Driving
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data shows that in the state of Texas, 40 percent of all traffic accident related deaths are linked to the actions of a drunk driver. The state topped the list of drunk driving accident deaths in 2013. Witherite says that in addition to those pertaining to the state there are also several nationwide statistics about drunk driving that many aren’t aware of. These include:
- An estimated 30 people die everyday in the U.S. in a motor vehicle crash caused by a driver who is alcohol impaired, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The agency says “This amounts to one death every 51 minutes.”
- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that an estimated third of all drivers who have been arrested for or convicted of driving while under the influence of alcohol are repeat offenders.
- A person is injured every minute in an alcohol related crash.
Reducing Drunk Driving Rates in Texas
The recently enacted Texas law follows recommendations made by several traffic safety organizations including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Texas Senator Joan Huffman, who was one of the most outspoken proponents of the legislation has said of its passage “The law is a common sense measure designed to increase accountability for those convicted of driving while intoxicated… The goal is to make our roads safer for everyone.”
Eberstein Witherite LLP
Url: 1-800 Car Wreck Houston