Facts About Drunk Driving in the US
Drunk driving is a leading cause of death on the road. Approximately 26,000 people die in this way each year. Most of these fatalities occur on county roads or holidays. Fortunately, there are ways to help prevent these accidents. Read on to learn about the facts of drunk driving in the US.
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Alcohol-related traffic fatalities are responsible for 26,000 deaths in us each year
Alcohol-impaired driving is the leading cause of traffic fatalities in the United States, and many of these deaths are preventable. According to recent statistics, drunk driving was responsible for more than 26,000 US deaths from 2004-2016. This statistic was even higher among people under the age of 25, with an estimated 1.6% of road deaths attributed to drunk driving.
The statistics on alcohol-impaired driving deaths are alarming. In 2010 alone, nearly a quarter of all fatal crashes on state highways involved at least one driver over the legal limit. The percentages are even higher on local roads, with nearly 20 percent of fatal crashes involving at least one driver with a BAC higher than the legal limit.
They account for a large share of all traffic fatalities
Drunk drivers are responsible for a significant share of all traffic fatalities in the US. According to the most recent statistics, more than ten thousand people die every year in alcohol-related crashes. In addition, over ten percent of all criminal arrests are related to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Despite this fact, some states have made progress in reducing this deadly practice.
The human and financial toll of drunk driving is staggering. In 2010, alcohol-related crashes accounted for almost $34 billion in costs to society. In addition to the high cost of the crime, the penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs are harsh. A first-time DUI conviction can result in fines of up to $10,000.
They occur most often on holidays
In the US, most people die from drunk driving during the holiday season. This time of year offers the best weather conditions for driving, but other factors increase the risk of drunk driving. For example, the number of holiday travelers is higher, and there are more drunk drivers on the road. According to AAA, which offers travel services, the number of fatal DUI accidents during this time of year is higher than in other months. Also, teens are increasingly drinking alcohol and driving during this time, resulting in higher rates of drunk driving among young drivers.
Holidays are popular times for social binge drinking, which increases the risk of drinking and driving. Many state highway patrol departments publish estimates of how many people die each year from alcohol-related crashes during the holiday season. Some studies have suggested that as many as 25 percent of Americans report drinking more than normal during the holiday season, this could be one of the reasons why there are more fatal DUI crashes during this time of year.
They occur most frequently on county roads
County roads are responsible for a large portion of fatal highway crashes. In 2010, more than 16,000 of these crashes involved alcohol-impaired drivers. This represented 19 percent of all crashes nationwide. In addition, most accidents occur on rural roads, which are less populated than interstates. As a result, these roads are also more likely to involve drunk drivers.
The percentage of alcohol-impaired driving deaths varies from state to state, but the national average is 20 percent. This is because the percentage includes deaths of people riding motorcycles and people who weren’t drivers. This statistic also includes fatal crashes involving no driver at all. While the national rate is higher, state fatalities are lower. This suggests that more people are becoming aware of the dangers of drunk driving.
They occur most often in the dark
It’s no surprise that many fatal car accidents involving drunk drivers occur during the night. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2008, nearly 49% of all fatal crashes involved a drunk driver. A staggering 78% of these accidents occurred at night, while only 3 percent occurred during the day. The most dangerous time of day for drunk drivers to be on the road is after midnight when the risk of fatal crashes is significantly higher.
Several factors make night driving more dangerous. For example, fewer daylight hours mean drivers are more fatigued. The rush hour also adds to the risk of a crash. And if the driver is impaired, the danger is even greater.