DWI arrests up, but car accidents don’t fall

Drunken driving arrests in New Orleans have soared in recent years, but many observers have noticed that even though those arrests are up, car accidents involving drunk drivers remain unacceptably high.

As you know, when drunk drivers hit the road, they often cause crashes that leave innocent people with serious injuries. And in too many cases, victims don’t survive their encounters with intoxicated drivers on our streets.

In St. Tammany Parish, arrests are down, as are drunk driving crashes. The sheriff there says the combination is due to efforts by his office to reach out to the community and educate people about the dangers of drunken driving. “We don’t want to arrest every person who drives through our parish,” he said. “We’re there to get the guy who’s truly impaired and not the husband and wife who have just celebrated their 20th anniversary over a bottle of wine.”

A substance abuse counselor has another perspective on the problem: “What people here fail to understand is that impairment starts with the first drink.”

Louisiana DUI Statistics

  • Though drunk driving arrests have doubled in New Orleans over the past four years, auto accidents involving inebriated drivers continue to exceed the national average.
  • Alcohol is a factor in approximately one third of all fatal car crashes in the U.S.
  • In Louisiana, that number rises dramatically to 43 percent. Compare that Utah, where just 19 percent of fatal accidents involve alcohol making it the fourth highest in the nation.
  • Nearly half of our 700 traffic fatalities involve impaired driving, including alcohol, marijuana, prescription drugs and other intoxicants.

In any crash due to impairment, accident victims can recover:

  • Damage to personal property
  • Medical Expenses for bodily Injury
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost Income
  • Punitive Damages

If you’re in a car accident where the other driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, contact the experienced Personal Injury attorneys at Burgos & Associates by calling (504) 488-3722 or filling out our online form.

1“DWI arrests are through the roof, but roads aren’t getting much safer,”