All too often, Albuquerque, New Mexico, residents are injured as a result of negligent drivers who consumed alcohol before getting behind the wheel of an automobile. While the legal limit to drive in the state of New Mexico is .08, a recent study shows that even drivers with far less of a blood alcohol content (BAC) level are a danger on the roads.
The University of California, San Diego study, which was recently published in the journal “Injury Prevention,” reveals that any amount of alcohol in a driver’s system puts the driver at a greater risk of causing a car accident.
The study involved examining data from more than 570,000 car accidents between 1994 and 2011. Researchers found that even drivers with a BAC of .01 were 46 percent more likely than sober drivers to be at fault for an accident. Being “at fault” included negligent behavior such as driving on the wrong side of the road or blowing through a red light.
The lead researcher of the study said that the results aren’t surprising, but this was the first study to analyze crash data involving “buzzed” drivers. The lead researcher said he hopes groups that fight against drunk driving will take notice that .08 is not a “magical” number, and no amount of alcohol is safe when combined with driving.
After a serious car accident, an experienced personal injury lawyer can help evaluate an accident victim’s claim and determine if negligent behavior, such as drinking, contributed to the accident. This determination can make a difference when it comes to the amount of damages the accident victim may be entitled to.
Source: Reuters, “Buzzed drivers under legal limit still risk car accidents,” Kathryn Doyle, Jan. 21, 2014