While Florida drivers remain relatively vigilant of drunk driving, the state does experience many drunk driving fatalities each year. A recent ranking published by a national drug testing center ranks Florida as 46th in the nation for drunk driving rates, with statistics sourced from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Department of Transportation and FBI crime reports. In another report, however, the activist group Mothers Against Drunk Driving (M.A.D.D.) found that Florida ranks 14th in the nation for drunk driving fatalities.
While these rates are steadily improving thanks to the various modes of transportation available to individuals who have had too much to drink (including taxis, Uber and Lyft), drunk driving remains prevalent in Florida. Having an experienced Fort Myers drunk driving accident lawyer on your side in the event of an accident is essential.
How Florida Compares to Other States
While Florida ranks somewhat high for drunk driving fatalities, it actually has one of the lowest rates in the nation for drunk driving arrests, according to a national drug testing company. In fact, with just 151 arrests for every 100,000 people, Florida ranks among the bottom five states for drunk driving arrests. Florida lowered its DUI arrest rate by as much as 30 percent from 2014 to 2018 and by roughly 50 percent over the last 10 years. There’s no doubt that the state’s stringent and swift penalties for DUI offenses played a large role in lowering the incidence of drunk driving in the state.
So, which states have the highest rates of DUI? Florida didn’t make the top five; however, three states in the Midwest and two others in the south rank among the top five most dangerous states for drunk driving.
Florida Laws Preventing Drunk Driving
One of the reasons why Florida is making strides in preventing drunk driving is because the penalties for doing so are relatively harsh as compared to other states. If you’re found to be driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.08% or higher, you will face criminal penalties.
In addition to criminal penalties, Florida drunk drivers will face significant civil liability if they cause someone to be injured due to a drunk driving accident. Under Florida law, drunk driving will be considered negligence that directly led to a drunk driving accident. Since negligence is the principal element of a personal injury or accident case, the drunk driver will be required to pay the injured party damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and punitive damages when the driver is a repeat offender.
Contact a Fort Myers Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer If You are Injured by a Drunk Driver
Florida drunk driving cases can be challenging to navigate, particularly if you’ve been injured in an accident by a drunk driver. It is important to find an attorney you can trust so that you can focus on healing.
To discuss your rights and options under the law, speak with Fort Myers Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Randall L. Spivey at Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. as soon as possible. Contact us online for a free initial consultation.
Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one percent (1%) of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. in Lee County at 239.337.7483 or toll-free at 1.888.477.4839 or by email to Randall@SpiveyLaw.com. Visit hurtbydrunkdriver.com for more information. You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. in Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and in Collier County at 239.793.7748.
Contact us online for a free initial consultation.