Drunk driving crashes are occurring all the time in Georgia, many of them fatal. The average summer day sees about 26 people in the U.S. die in DUI crashes. This number spikes about 60% on the Fourth of July. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says there were 184 DUI fatalities during the Fourth of July weekend in 2017. A comparable span of four or five summer days resulted in fewer deaths: an average of 117.

The Fourth of July is dangerous not only when compared to the rest of summer but also when compared to all the major holidays celebrated in the U.S. NHTSA data reveals that 1,192 people died in DUI-related crashes on Independence Day from 2010 to 2017. The DUI fatality rate came to 42.4 per day. Memorial Day saw 1,105 fatalities in the same period and a fatality rate of 39.5. Out of six major holidays, Christmas saw the lowest rate (27.7).

The rate will differ based on whether Independence Day falls on a weekday or the weekend. Fewer DUI fatalities occur when the Fourth of July is on a Saturday (36.3 per day on average), and they peak on Wednesdays (52). The fatality rate for the entire workweek is 43.4. Drivers, then, should avoid long trips on Independence Day when possible.

If drivers get drunk and cause a car accident, they will be to blame for the other’s injuries. The personal injury claim that their insurance provider will face will be separate from the criminal charges. However, victims of a drunk driver may sue for not only compensatory damages but also punitive damages, which are meant to punish the defendant. To see how much they might be eligible for, victims may consult with a lawyer. The lawyer might assist with negotiations.