Texas & New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyers

Drunk Driving Accident Trends in Texas

A day doesn’t pass in Texas without a death due to drunk driving. Every death caused by drinking and driving is avoidable, but many families are impacted by a life needlessly taken. Texas drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists are all exposed to the unnecessary dangers created by drivers who choose to drink and get behind the wheel.

Being aware of notable trends in drinking and driving can help protect you and your loved ones while traveling Texas streets and highways. A Texas drunk driving accident attorney can offer guidance if you have been injured due to negligence when someone chooses to drive while intoxicated. When the outcome is fatal, a wrongful death lawyer in Texas will compassionately walk you through the legal process to fight for the compensation your family deserves.

Texas Drunk Driving Accidents Are Often Deadly

Despite the law making it illegal to drink and drive in Texas and the number of these accidents slightly decreasing, the number of fatalities attributed to intoxication while operating a vehicle has gone up, according to recent statistics from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT). Key takeaways from the most recent report include:

  • Over 1,160 people died in drunk driving accidents.
  • There has been a 2% increase in deaths from drunk driving crashes.
  • As many as 26% of all Texas traffic deaths involve a drunk driver.
  • One person died in Texas every 7 hours and 32 minutes due to drinking and driving.
  • Three deaths occur every day in Texas because of drinking and driving.

According to this report, it has been almost 24 years since Texas experienced a deathless day on its highways. Each death represents a life taken too soon and the grief of the victim’s family due to a negligent driver.

Age Matters in Texas Drinking and Driving Accidents

Drivers 35 and under account for more DUI driver fatalities than all other age groups combined, leading to a total of 384 drunk driver deaths. Of that age group, younger drivers between 21 and 25 experienced the most fatalities from drinking and driving of the entire population. College and young adult impaired drivers may face costs and fines up to $17,000, jail time, and the loss of a license if convicted of drunk driving.

Texas Counties with the Most DUI Crashes

Counties with the availability of rideshare platform services and taxis still experience significantly high rates of DUI crashes and injuries. Many individuals may forgo the use of these services to avoid the cost. However, as mentioned, DUI costs far surpass the cost of a ride for the evening. The following counties have the highest incidents of DUI crashes in Texas:

  • Harris County: 3,553 crashes
  • Dallas County: 2,275 crashes
  • Bexar County: 1,854 crashes
  • Tarrant County: 1,474 crashes
  • Travis County: 1,464 crashes

Drunk Driving Increases on Specific Days and Times in Texas

The early hours of a Sunday morning are the most unsafe times to be on the road. According to data collected over ten years, most of the traffic fatalities involving alcohol occurred between 2:00 am and 3:00 am. The next most dangerous time on Texas roadways is between 2:00 am and 2:59 am on Saturday mornings. Additionally, most of the fatal drunk driving accidents occur on rural roads.

Blood Alcohol Concentration Is Often High in Fatally Injured Drivers

A Texas driver is considered intoxicated if they have a BAC of 0.080. When fatally injured drivers were tested to determine their blood alcohol concentration (BAC), 1,309 had some alcohol in their systems at the time of their deaths. Of those, 40.26% had a BAC of 0.80 or more, and 6.11% had a BAC of 0.01 - 0.079.

Texas Drunk Driving Accident Trends Compared to National Trends

Texas’s motto of Everything is Bigger in Texas unfortunately also applies to fatal drunk driving statistics. Texans die more frequently from drinking and driving compared to the national average. Fact sheets provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that:

  • Texans across every age are more likely to die from alcohol-impaired driving than the rest of the U.S.
  • Texas males and females die at higher rates from alcohol-impaired driving than other males and females in the U.S.
  • Over 2% of Texans report driving after drinking too much compared with 1.7% of other drivers in the country.

Texas Actions to Prevent Drinking and Driving Accidents

Texas applies a zero-tolerance law for minors who drink and drive. Implied consent allows police officers to collect blood or breath samples for analysis after being arrested for drinking and driving. In addition to being arrested, a minor may:

  • Lose their license
  • Pay fines
  • Perform community service
  • Attend rehabilitative programs

Their parents may be required to attend alcohol awareness classes depending on the offense. Along with fines, jail time, and other costly fees that may accompany a DUI, Texas has passed a bill requiring drunk drivers in Texas to pay child support if they are found guilty of fatally injuring a child’s parent or guardian. Convicted drunk drivers are required to pay support until a child turns 18 or graduates high school, whichever is later.

What To Do If a Drunk Driver Injures You in Texas

Advocate for yourself and your loved ones if you are injured in an accident involving a drunk driver. The priority in any accident is to receive medical care for your injuries. Even when injuries are not evident, it is wise to seek care to document the accident should a medical condition develop.

Call 911 and request law enforcement’s support. It is okay to speak with them about drunk driving suspicions. Then, contact a Texas drunk driving accident attorney as soon as possible to understand what steps to take to document your injuries and pursue compensation for your damages.

Experienced Drunk Driving Accident Attorneys in Texas

You or someone you know has likely been impacted by a careless and intoxicated person in a vehicle. Drunk driving is illegal, dangerous, and deadly. Speak with a Texas drunk driving accident lawyer at Farah Law to understand your rights to compensation from damages resulting from negligence caused by drinking and driving. Let our experience and track record work for yo