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Drunk drivers only part of the problem in U.S.

If you've been in a drunk driving accident with a negligent driver in Iowa, then you know that the cost of the accident is more than just monetary. This report about the economic and societal harm of motor vehicle crashes may interest you, as it's allegedly shown that crashes account for $871 billion in costs in a single year.

The report from May 29 states that a new study examined information from 2010 to find the total cost of damages to people and vehicles. In 2010, 32,999 people were killed in these accidents, some of which were caused by drunk drivers. In fact, the study cited some behavioral factors that contributed to the price of these accidents. Those factors were named as being speeding, distracted driving and drunk driving.

The cost of the loss of life, pain and decreased quality of life due to injuries was an astounding $594 billion for 2010. Only $277 billion was attributed to economic costs, according to the report, but that still added up to around $900 per person living in the United States, to show the scale of the costs.

What this study has shown to the transportation administration and others is that safety education and investments are worth their costs. By reducing drunk driving, distracted driving and other negligence issues, lives can be saved and so can money. The study also comes at a time where the Transportation Secretary has asked the U.S. Congress to increase the amount of the fine that the government can charge automakers who take part in safety violations. Right now, the penalties are capped at $35 million, but he believes that the number should be closer to $300 million, and some others would like the limit eliminated.

Source: Omaha.com, "Report: Car, truck crashes cost $871B" No author given, May. 29, 2014

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