Sitting on the desk of the Legislature are two bills demanding stricter regulations and consequences for drunk driving. A Dallas personal injury lawyer gives insight to the issue at hand.
The statistics documented on the issue of drunk driving abound. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, in 2006, alcohol was a factor is 45 percent of Texas’ fatal crashes, which is higher than the national average of 32 percent. In 2007, the state of Texas experienced a total of 1,292 individuals who lost their lives as a result of drunk driving. In fact, Dallas County had the second-highest number of drunken driving deaths in the state in 2007.
Thousands of deaths, damaged properties, and painful lawsuits are a few of the catalysts that are have prompted legislatures in the Texas House and Senate to put stringent enforcements onto paper. As per Amy Witherite, a Dallas personal injury lawyer, Texas is one of only 11 states that prohibit sobriety checkpoints (roadblocks set up by law enforcement to test whether drivers have been drinking), which is interesting considering the number of deaths caused by drunk drivers.
The second bill proposes the requirement for those caught driving drunk, to install a Breathalyzer in their cars. Support for the bill for ignition interlock devices installation comes from the a 2001 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that stated “sobriety checkpoints reduce alcohol fatalities by 20 percent.”
But as with any bill, there are always the opponents. In this case, it is the Texas Criminal Lawyers Association, which argue that the laws can potentially violate individual rights. Yet, driving is not a right in this country, it is a privilege. And if that privilege is abused, it must be revoked. America as a whole must be educated further on the effects and dangers of drinking and driving.
Contributor: Dallas Attorney – Amy Witherite – Dallas personal injury lawyer
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