California DUI criminal defense lawyers report that the number of drunken-driving fatalities has fallen nationwide and in 32 individual states, U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters said yesterday.
"More drivers are getting the message that if you drink and drive, you will be caught, you will be arrested and you will go to jail," Peters said in a news release. "But as good as this progress is, in this day and age there is simply no excuse for someone to drink and then drive."
Even though the number of alcohol-related fatalities has dropped, the number of similar deaths among motorcyclists is climbing in 25 states.
In 2007, an estimated 12,998 people died in accidents where a driver had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher, Peters said, representing a 3.7 percent decline from the 13,491 fatalities in 2006.
Peters said the Transportation Department was working with law enforcement agencies across the United States on a stepped-up drunken-driving enforcement effort during the Labor Day holiday period. The department was investing $13 million in advertising during the holiday weekend with the message, "Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest."