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60+ Drunk Driving Statistics

Stay informed and safe on the road with these drunk driving statistics, including facts about accidents, consequences, and prevention.

Drunk Driving Statistics

Drunk driving is a serious issue that affects everyone on the road. With the rise of ride-sharing apps and public awareness campaigns, many people are now aware of the dangers of driving under the influence. However, the problem persists. Here are 60 drunk driving statistics you need to know:

Centers of Disease Control and Prevention

Drunk Driving Statistics in General

  • Every day, about 30 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes, which equates to one death every 50 minutes.
  • In 2019, 10,142 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes, accounting for 28% of all traffic-related deaths in the United States.
  • More than 1 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics in 2019.
  • The rate of drunk driving is highest among 26-29 year olds (20.7%) and is the second highest among 21-25 year olds (19.0%).
  • On average, two in three people will be involved in a drunk driving crash in their lifetime.
  • In 2019, 3,142 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers.

Alcohol Consumption Statistics

  • In 2019, 14.5 million adults aged 18 and older had alcohol use disorder (AUD).
  • Alcohol-impaired driving accounts for more than one-third of all traffic-related deaths in the United States.
  • One in four adults admit to binge drinking in the past month.
  • In 2019, 6.3% of adults aged 18 and older reported driving after drinking too much.
  • Alcohol-related deaths are the third leading preventable cause of death in the United States.

Drunk Driving and Youth

  • In 2019, 19% of drivers aged 16-20 involved in fatal motor vehicle crashes had been drinking alcohol.
  • In 2019, 5.4% of high school students reported driving after drinking alcohol.
  • In 2019, 16% of high school students reported riding with a driver who had been drinking alcohol.
  • In 2019, 39% of drivers aged 15-20 who were killed in motor vehicle crashes had been drinking.
  • In 2019, 18% of drivers aged 16-20 involved in motor vehicle crashes were drinking.
Statista

Drunk Driving and Accidents

  • Alcohol-related crashes cost the United States about $44 billion annually.
  • In 2019, 4,110 people were killed in crashes involving large trucks.
  • In 2019, 28% of motorcyclists who died in crashes had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher.
  • In 2019, 2,104 children under the age of 14 were killed in motor vehicle crashes. Of those, 14% involved a driver with a BAC of 0.08% or higher.
  • In 2019, 47% of fatal crashes that involved only one vehicle were alcohol-impaired.

Drunk Driving and Consequences

  • In 2019, 1.1 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • In 2019, the average cost of a DUI conviction was $10,000.
  • In 2019, 20% of people arrested for drunk driving were repeat offenders.
  • In 2019, 3,142 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers.
  • In 2019, about one in three traffic deaths in the United States involved a drunk driver.

Drunk Driving and Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC)

  • In all 50 states, the legal BAC limit for drivers is 0.08%.
  • A driver with a BAC of 0.08% or higher is 11 times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than a driver who has not been drinking.
  • At a BAC of 0.15%, the risk of a fatal crash is 25 times higher than for a sober driver.
  • It takes about one hour for the average person to metabolize one standard drink and eliminate it from their body.
AmericanAddictionCenters

Drunk Driving and Enforcement

  • In some states, sobriety checkpoints are used to deter drunk driving by randomly stopping drivers and testing their BAC levels.
  • The use of ignition interlock devices (IIDs) has been shown to reduce drunk driving recidivism rates by up to 70%.
  • In some states, people convicted of DUIs may be required to attend alcohol education or treatment programs as part of their sentence.

Drunk Driving and Technology

  • Some car manufacturers are developing technology that can detect a driver's BAC and prevent the car from starting if it is too high.
  • Smartphone apps are available that can help people estimate their BAC based on factors such as body weight, gender, and number of drinks consumed.

Drunk Driving and COVID-19

  • During the COVID-19 pandemic, drunk driving rates have decreased overall due to reduced social gatherings and closures of bars and restaurants.
  • However, some areas have seen an increase in drunk driving incidents as people seek alternative forms of entertainment while staying home.
Responsibility.org

Drunk Driving and Drugs

  • In addition to alcohol, drugs can also impair a driver's ability to operate a vehicle safely. In 2019, 43% of drivers who were killed in motor vehicle crashes and tested positive for drugs had also consumed alcohol.
  • The use of marijuana, prescription drugs, and other illicit substances can increase a driver's risk of being involved in a crash.
  • In 2019, 39% of drivers who were killed in crashes and tested positive for drugs had used marijuana.

Drunk Driving and Pedestrians

  • Pedestrians are also at risk of being involved in drunk driving accidents. In 2019, 2,867 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes, and 33% of those involved a driver with a BAC of 0.08% or higher.
  • Alcohol-impaired drivers are more likely to be involved in nighttime crashes, which can be particularly dangerous for pedestrians.

Drunk Driving and Injuries

  • Drunk driving accidents can result in serious injuries as well as fatalities. In 2019, an estimated 290,000 people were injured in crashes involving alcohol-impaired drivers.
  • Injuries from drunk driving accidents can include broken bones, head trauma, spinal cord injuries, and internal organ damage.
TalkItOut

Drunk Driving and Repeat Offenders

  • Repeat offenders are a major concern in the fight against drunk driving. In 2019, about one-third of all drivers arrested or convicted for drunk driving were repeat offenders.
  • Some states have implemented strict penalties for repeat offenders, including mandatory jail time and longer license suspensions.

Drunk Driving and Prevention

  • Preventing drunk driving requires a multi-faceted approach that includes education, enforcement, and technology.
  • Organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) work to raise awareness about the dangers of drunk driving and advocate for stronger laws and penalties.
  • Many states have implemented programs to educate drivers about the risks of drunk driving and encourage them to make safe choices, such as designating a sober driver or using a ride-sharing service.

Drunk Driving and Alternatives

  • There are many alternatives to drunk driving that can help people get home safely after drinking, including ride-sharing services, taxis, public transportation, and designated drivers.
  • Some bars and restaurants offer free non-alcoholic drinks to designated drivers as an incentive to stay sober.
Safewise

Drunk Driving and Legal Consequences

  • In addition to fines, jail time, and license suspensions, a DUI conviction can have other legal consequences such as increased insurance rates and difficulty obtaining employment.
  • Drivers who are involved in drunk driving accidents may also face civil lawsuits from injured parties seeking compensation for their injuries.

Drunk Driving and Underage Drinking

  • Underage drinking is a major contributor to drunk driving accidents. In 2019, 10% of all drivers involved in fatal crashes who had a BAC of 0.08% or higher were under the age of 21.
  • Parents can play an important role in preventing underage drinking and drunk driving by talking to their children about the risks of alcohol use and setting clear rules and expectations.

Risk Factors for Drunk Driving

Several risk factors contribute to the occurrence of drunk driving incidents. Understanding these factors can help identify individuals who may be more prone to engaging in this dangerous behavior. Some common risk factors for drunk driving include:

  • Age: Younger individuals, particularly those in their late teens and early twenties, are more likely to engage in drunk driving.
  • Gender: Men are more likely to drive under the influence of alcohol compared to women.
  • Previous Convictions: Individuals with prior DUI arrests are at a higher risk of repeating the offense.
  • Lack of Education: Lower levels of education are associated with an increased risk of drunk driving.

Support and Resources for Alcoholics

Recognizing that alcohol addiction is often a root cause of drunk driving incidents, providing support and resources for individuals struggling with alcoholism is crucial. By addressing the underlying issues that lead to alcohol abuse, we can help prevent future instances of drunk driving.

Here are some ways to support alcoholics:

  • Encourage treatment and rehabilitation: Encourage individuals struggling with alcohol addiction to seek professional help and provide information about resources available, such as support groups and treatment centers.
  • Offer emotional support: Be understanding and non-judgmental towards individuals with alcohol addiction. Offer a listening ear and be there to support them through their journey to recovery.
  • Promote awareness and education: Support initiatives that aim to raise awareness about alcoholism, its impact on individuals, families, and communities, and the importance of seeking help.

By taking personal responsibility, engaging with the community, and providing support to those struggling with alcohol addiction, we can collectively work towards reducing drunk driving incidents and creating safer roads for everyone.

FAQs

What is considered a "drink" in terms of BAC?

In general, one drink is considered to be 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits, 12 ounces of beer, or 5 ounces of wine. However, it's important to note that factors such as body weight, gender, and metabolism can affect how quickly alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream and how it affects an individual's BAC.

Is it safe to drive after just one drink?

It depends on several factors, including the individual's body weight, gender, and metabolism. However, as a general rule, it's safest to avoid driving altogether after drinking any amount of alcohol.

Are there any medications that can affect BAC levels?

Yes, some medications can interact with alcohol and increase its effects on the body. These include prescription drugs such as tranquilizers and pain relievers as well as over-the-counter medications like cough syrup and antihistamines.

How can I tell if someone is too drunk to drive?

Signs that someone may be too drunk to drive include slurred speech, impaired coordination or balance, bloodshot eyes, and a strong odor of alcohol on their breath or clothing. If you suspect someone is too drunk to drive, encourage them to find an alternative means of transportation or offer to call them a ride-sharing service.

What should I do if I'm involved in a drunk driving accident?

If you're involved in a drunk driving accident, first call 911 for emergency medical assistance if needed. Then exchange information with the other driver(s) involved in the accident and wait for law enforcement to arrive. Be sure to document any damage or injuries sustained in the accident and seek medical attention if necessary.

Summary

Drunk driving is a serious problem that affects everyone on the road. These statistics highlight the dangers of driving under the influence and the need for continued public awareness campaigns and law enforcement efforts to curb this behavior. Remember, if you plan to drink, always have a designated driver or use a ride-sharing app to ensure you and those around you stay safe on the road.

Sources:

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