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Connecticut leads U.S. in alcohol-impaired driving fatalities

The state of Connecticut had the highest rate of alcohol-impaired driving fatalities among all states in 2017, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA). Connecticut recorded 278 fatal vehicle crashes in 2017, and, of those, 43% involved at least one intoxicated driver, the NHTSA said.

While overall fatalities from crashes in Connecticut declined from 304 in 2016 to 278 in 2017, deaths involving drunk drivers increased by 3.5%.

During the same period, nationwide intoxicated driver crash deaths decreased by 1.1% or 29% overall. In 2017, there were 112 fewer alcohol-related driving deaths nationwide than the previous year. The 29% fatality rate is the lowest number since the NHTSA began keeping data over 35 years ago.

Over ten years, from 2008 to 2017, alcohol-impaired driving fatalities nationwide decreased by 7%, from 11,711 in 2008 to 10,874 in 2017, the NHTSA said.

The NHTSA also found that the end of the year is the most dangerous time to be on the road. In December, 4,110 people died in drunk-driving crashes nationwide from 2013 to 2017.

The average recorded blood alcohol content among intoxicated drivers in deadly crashes was .16, which is twice the legal limit. However, blood alcohol testing of motorists in fatal crashes varies by state. Nationwide, 42.2% of all drivers involved in fatal crashes were tested, according to former NHTSA researcher Jim Hedlund. Connecticut’s rate was higher at 46.3%. Mississippi tested the least at 23.4%, while South Dakota had the highest rate, at 89.2%, according to Hedlund.

Cannabis use is also a factor in fatal crashes among young Connecticut drivers. NHTSA’s data showed that more young drivers use marijuana and drive than any other age group.

Other New England states ranking behind Connecticut included Rhode Island at 41%, Massachusetts at 34%, and Maine at 29%.

Contact Us

If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in an auto accident, our Connecticut car accident attorneys are standing by to review your case. Our firm is dedicated to helping you get the results you deserve. We offer our clients the personal attention necessary to provide you with tailor-made legal options to achieve your desired result. To speak with one our experienced Connecticut auto accident lawyers, call Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers at (203) 397-1283 today or use our case evaluation form to schedule a free initial consultation.



Observe National Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month with the Team at Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers

Each May, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and motorcycle advocates encourage people to recognize the importance of safe driving when it comes to sharing the road with motorcycles. Because every vehicle has the same rights and responsibilities on our highways, streets, and roads, it is important to remember to watch out for bikes while driving.

Because motorcycle riders and their passengers have little to no protection from serious injury in the event of an accident, it is the responsibility of the rider and other drivers to practice safe driving when sharing the road. Helmets and protective gear will only go so far to prevent injury, and in the event of an accident, the rider and passengers often suffer far worse consequences than those in cars or trucks.

The NHTSA website provides a few helpful tips for both motorists and bikers to keep both safe on the road. Motorists should:

  • Be aware of motorcyclists on the road. Always check for motorcyclists when changing lanes, merging, or leaving the highway.
  • Be sure to always signal lane changes to alert riders of your intent to move.
  • Motorcycles have the same rights as any other vehicle, which means they are entitled to a full-lane when driving. Do not try to share a lane with a motorcycle.
  • Always maintain a safe driving distance between your vehicle and a motorcycle in front of you.
  • As always, do not drive while intoxicated or allow in-vehicle distractions to take your eyes off the road.

For motorcycle riders, the NHTSA recommends:

  • Always wear the proper safety gear, including a helmet, boots, and protective clothing while riding.
  • Maintain a safe distance between your bike and other vehicles.
  • Do not attempt to share a lane with a car or truck.
  • Obey all traffic laws, and don’t try to pass traffic by weaving in-and-out among other vehicles.
  • Do not operate a motorcycle while drunk or under the influence of drugs or prescription medication.

If both bikers and the motorists they share the road with follow these helpful tips, severe injury accidents may be prevented.

Our Motorcycle Accident Lawyers are Here to Help

The experienced Connecticut motorcycle accident lawyers of Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers have helped injured bikers get the compensation they need to get back on their feet after an accident. We know the devastation that a motorcycle accident can cause, and we firmly believe in doing what’s right and helping make sure that justice is served. Hurt in an accident? We can help. Call us at (203) 397-1283 to schedule a free consultation with a member of our team today.


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