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Rideshares Like Uber, Lyft May Help Prevent Drunk Driving Crashes in Alabama

Phone based GPS in a car at night.

A Mobile Car Accident Lawyer Explains

A new study out just in time for the holidays notes that the availability of rideshare services like Uber and Lyft are associated with a significant decline in drunk driving accidents.

In Alabama, about 1 out of every 4 fatal car accidents involves alcohol, according to The state has a significantly higher drunk driving fatality rate than the U.S, as about 5 people die in alcohol-involved crashes per 100,000 Alabama people. Nationwide, the rate is 3.2.

Researchers at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health analyzed and compared data in one city where rideshares were plentiful and sparse.

An increase in one rideshare trip per square mile is associated with a 0.2% decrease in the odds of an alcohol-involved crash, according to the study.

While 0.2% may not seem like a big deal, crashes avoided and lives saved add up when calculated out over the rest of the U.S. and large cities where rideshare services make thousands of trips per day.

Drunk Driving Alternatives in Alabama

Safety advocates say the timing of the study is excellent. They note it is a reminder that sober rides home are available and save lives at a time when people need to hear it. Typically, the number of overall car accidents tends to spike on Black Friday and remain high throughout the holiday season. Alcohol is often a factor.

There are many alternatives to driving impaired (buzzed, intoxicated, drunk, etc.). There's usually someone in your friend or family group willing to give a loved one a lift home. There are also taxi services and public transportation in addition to rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft. Some colleges and universities offer their own sober rides on the weekends.

Also, sober rides aren't just for people who have consumed too much alcohol and have a BAC (blood alcohol content) over the legal limit to drive (0.08). Any time a person gets behind the wheel and operates a vehicle when they are mentally incapable of safely maintaining control it's almost certainly impaired driving. A driver can be impaired by alcohol and drugs as well as fatigue, illness, or even heightened states of emotion. They can also be charged by police for driving impaired under any of these given circumstances in addition to others.

Alabama DUI Fatalities (Per County)

As is the case across the U.S., Alabama is experiencing an increase in drunk driving incidents, injuries, and deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Alabama has undergone a recent string of high-profile suspected drunk driving cases involving various university football stars, a deputy, and a woman who killed a worker in a construction zone.

Some counties are more prone to fatal drunk driving accidents than others. The University of Alabama's annual crash report provides a list of how many people died due to drunk driving accidents by county for 2019 (the most recent information available). In the southwest region, here is a list of how many suspected DUI fatalities occurred:

  • Mobile County - 28 alcohol-related crash fatalities
  • Baldwin County - 22 fatalities
  • Choctaw and Wilcox counties - 3 fatalities recorded per county
  • Clarke, Escambia, Monroe, and Washington counties - 2 fatalities per county
  • Conecuh and Marengo counties - No alcohol-related fatalities

Compensation, Justice For Crash Victims

Alcohol-involved car accidents tend to be among the most violent and devastating crashes a person can suffer.

If you were injured or lost a loved one due to someone else's negligence, you deserve justice and financial compensation for your losses.

Dean Waite & Associates, LLC has a strong reputation for aggressively going after insurance companies and advocating for the compensation our clients deserve.

Our law firm is based in Mobile and we represent clients located in southwest Alabama and throughout the state. If you've been injured in an accident, "Don't Dean Waite!"

Contact us today for a free consultation.

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