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Is it safer to walk home drunk than it is to drive?

You know that if you've been drinking at a party you shouldn't try to drive home. But what about a sobering walk? Is that any safer?

It turns out it's not. Walking while drunk can be just as deadly to pedestrians as driving.

According to data from sources like the federal Department of Transportation, among others, many intoxicated pedestrians die in accidents with vehicles. In a single year targeted by the DOT — 2013 — 4,434 pedestrians died. Over 50 percent of those deaths involved alcohol usage.

The agency's findings, published in Injury Prevention, discovered that pedestrians were at their most vulnerable on weekends from Friday evening through Sunday night and during summer and fall. The majority of pedestrian deaths occurred in the afternoons and evenings, times when alcohol is typically consumed.

Male pedestrians are at a much higher risk of becoming traffic fatalities. In the nine years between 2004-2013, over 80 percent of the pedestrians who died after drinking were male.

Age is a factor as well. On average, drunken pedestrians killed by vehicles were 10 years older than their counterparts who died in auto crashes after drinking and driving.

While these statistics are indeed sobering, they do not mean that simply because a pedestrian had a few drinks that drivers who mow them down cannot be held criminally and civilly liable for their damages, injuries or even deaths.

A New Jersey personal injury attorney can build a strong case against the driver who struck you regardless of the filing or outcome of any criminal charges, tickets or traffic offenses.

Source: Medical Daily, "Pedestrian Accidents While ‘Drunk Walking’ Often As Deadly As Drunk Driving Collisions," Susan Scutti, accessed March 09, 2017

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