South Carolina residents are likely aware that the number of road users killed in drunk driving accidents increases each year during the holiday season. The White House said that action was needed to reduce this annual surge in road deaths in a Nov. 30 proclamation, and December 2017 was designated as National Impaired Driving Prevention Month to promote better awareness of the issue.

The White House pledged to give the nation’s law enforcement agencies the resources they need to combat drunk driving, and the administration wants to ease the regulatory obstacles facing ride-sharing companies like Lyft and Uber.

The proclimation comes after two consecutive years of sobering road safety statistics. Drunk drivers were once responsible for almost two-thirds of all road deaths in the United States, but that figure declined steadily over the last four decades thanks largely to a nationwide law enforcement effort and powerful public awareness campaigns. This downward trend in drunk driving deaths came to an abrupt end in 2015, and the most recent crash data reveals that impaired driving accidents claimed more than 10,000 lives in 2016.

Police departments generally investigate car accidents thoroughly when impaired drivers are involved and lives have been lost or injuries are serious. The results of their inquiries may be used by experienced personal injury attorneys to establish liability in lawsuits brought on behalf of those who have suffered injury, loss or damage. Proving negligence is not always straightforward in car accident lawsuits, but it may be easier when toxicology tests reveal that reckless motorists were diving with blood alcohol levels in excess of the .08 percent nationwide legal limit.