The Pennsylvania Driving Under the Influence Association (PA DUI) is working hard to keep drunk drivers off of Pennsylvania’s roadways. For over 35 years, this non-profit organization has been dedicated to preventing drunk drivers from taking the lives of innocent victims. With over 50 municipal task forces working alongside law enforcement officials, nearly 50,000 drunk drivers were prevented from getting behind the wheel in 2014 alone.
According to data compiled by the PA DUI, both fatal and non-fatal drunk driving car accidents are on the decline in Pennsylvania. Despite this downward trend, drunk driving still continues to be a problem in the Keystone State. In the year 2013, there were over 11,000 alcohol-related crashes reported in Pennsylvania with 381 of them resulting in fatalities. Though this is the lowest amount of alcohol-related crashes over the past five years, the numbers are still disturbing. Statistical analysis of this data reveals that there are 30 alcohol-related car accidents, at least one fatality, and over 20 people injured on average by a drunk driver each day in Pennsylvania.
The penalties are tough for driving under the influence in Pennsylvania, especially for repeat offenders. For drivers convicted of a second DUI within a ten year period, there is a mandatory license suspension of one year followed by the installation of an ignition interlock device (IID) on every vehicle owned by the driver for a period of one year following license restoration. Repeat offenders must also serve a five day to five year prison sentence, and are responsible for all costs involved in processing, as well as purchase and installation, of the ignition interlock device. Drivers convicted of a third offense or more will lose their driving privileges for a period up to 18 months, serve ten days to five years in jail, attend mandated alcohol driver safety school classes, and keep the IID on all vehicles for a period to be determined at the time of sentencing.
The PA DUI Association heads the ignition interlock device quality assurance program for the state. The device requires the driver to use an installed breathalyzer each time they get behind the wheel. If their alcohol content is over the safe driving limit, the vehicle will not start. The organization reports that in 2014, there were 5,659 IIDs installed on Pennsylvania vehicles that prevented a total of 48,457 attempts by impaired drivers from getting behind the wheel.
Drunk drivers claim the lives of hundreds of people each year in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Those who survive a car accident involving a drunk driver often suffer serious injuries and long recovery periods. Philadelphia personal injury law firm of Galfand Berger LLP is committed to helping the victims of drunk drivers claim compensation for their losses.
If you or someone you know has been hurt or killed by a drunk driver, call the experienced and highly skilled Philadelphia personal injury lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP at 1-800-222-USWA, or complete our online contact form to schedule a consultation today. Our offices are located in Philadelphia, Reading, and Bethlehem allowing us to serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including Allentown and Harrisburg.