Impaired driving, which is driving while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, is a significant issue in Arizona and across the country. Thousands of people each year are injured or killed as the result of other individuals' choosing to drive while inebriated, in some form, which often results in a car accident. When injuries occur or when loved ones are lost due to the actions of impaired drivers, the recovery -- whether it is physical, emotional, financial or all of the above -- is often difficult and lives are forever changed.
According to statistics obtained from the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for 2003, approximately one person was killed every 33 minutes in the United States due impaired driving -- more specifically drunk driving. That same year, approximately 39,000 fatal crashes were reported nationwide, resulting in over 42,000 deaths. Nearly half of those fatalities were linked to impaired drivers.
This is an issue that affects people of all ages, genders and socio-economic backgrounds. Arizona, alone, experienced close to 500 alcohol-related deaths in 2003. Sadly, this number has seemed to increased over the years.
Arizona residents who were injured or lost a loved one in an auto-pedestrian or car accident caused by an impaired driver have the right to pursue legal actions against the individuals believed responsible. Personal injury, wrongful death and -- if applicable -- survival action claims may be filed and litigated in civil court. If negligence is established successfully and to the satisfaction of the court, compensation for related losses may be awarded.
Source: azdps.gov, "DUI Statistics : Impaired Driving", Accessed on April 12, 2015