America is in the midst of an opioid epidemic. All across the country, use of opioid drugs – both illegal and illicit prescription varieties – are up.
Opioids are a class of drugs that include heroin and prescription drugs such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, fentanyl, and others.
According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine, the overdose death rate in the U.S. in 2008 was four times higher than it was in 1999. Sales of prescription pain relievers like oxycodone were four times higher in 2010 than they were in 1999.
The statistics are troubling. More and more people are using opioid drugs and dying from opioid overdoses than ever before.
And more and more people are choosing to drive while under the influence of drugs, putting us all at risk.
Drug-related car accidents
Recent research shows huge spike in drugged driving accidents. Research by Columbia University found a sevenfold increase in the number of fatal motor vehicle accidents involving prescription painkiller use.
Prescription and opioid drug use can lead to drowsiness, slowed reaction times, and cognitive impairment. These behaviors have a detrimental effect on a driver’s ability to drive safely.
According to NHTSA research, 57 percent of drivers suffering fatal injuries had alcohol and/or drugs in their systems: 17 percent had both alcohol and drugs in their systems.
Drugged driving is a public health crisis, and is a threat to all motorists. It is becoming an issue on par with drunk driving.
When a driver is under the influence of drugs and an accident occurs, victims may be eligible for significant compensation.
Free attorney consultation: If you or a loved one have been injured by a driver who was under the influence of drugs, please call 800-594-4884.