While Washington State lawmakers have been deliberating over tougher drunk driving laws after a recent tragic accident, another reportedly alcohol-related car accident has occurred in the area. A wrong-way driver on Highway 520 crashed head-on into the vehicle of a 58-year-old Seattle woman, and she died from her injuries. The driver of the other vehicle had possibly been drinking and driving.
Being convicted of a drunk driving offense is a serious consequence to face. Any DUI charges can result in jail time, large fines and damage to reputation. Yet, when a drinking and driving charge also involves harm or death to another, the situation is all the more dyer. Such is the case for a 26-year old man recently charged with homicide accusations.
Many college students engage in partying, which often leads to drinking. One popular football player at the University of Washington made the decision to drive afterward, and he now faces a drunk driving charge.
Police officers are often out in full force on holiday weekends, typically to make drunk driving arrests. The recent President's Day weekend was no exception in Washington. In Pierce and Thurston counties alone, 55 drivers were arrested on drunk driving charges, including one man who was driving the wrong way on Highway 101 in the early morning hours.
Drinking and driving can result in accidents and injuries not only to the one doing the drinking, but also to other drivers and pedestrians as well. An early-morning car-bicycle accident in Monroe -- an hour outside Tacoma -- left a bicyclist severely injured. The driver of the car that hit the bicyclist was arrested for drinking and driving.
Even those who are in charge of the cities and towns that people live in get in trouble with the law from time to time. A Tacoma councilman found this out after he was pulled over just after midnight on Jan. 20. He was suspected of drinking and driving and subsequently arrested.
Despite warning motorists ahead of time of the extra police patrols during the holidays, many still made the decision to drink and drive. Washington State's first-ever "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" campaign targeted those who were drinking and driving, with 543 drivers arrested throughout the county.
With the new year come new laws. In Washington, one of the new laws applies to those who have been previously convicted of a DUI charge and must use ignition interlock devices in order to start their cars.
With the holiday season comes Christmas and New Year's Eve parties. These celebrations often lead to alcohol consumption, which can lead to an alcohol-related car accident. However, there is no excuse for those drinking and driving in Pierce County this holiday season.
The Washington State Patrol had extra officers out on the roadways during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Yet despite extensive media coverage alerting drivers of the extra enforcement efforts, and warning people to refrain from drinking and driving, many did anyway.