Shocking Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

Several shocking drunk driving statistics have been published recently, including the fact that over 10,000 DUI-related deaths happen each year, in fact, around 30 people a day are killed by drunk driving. And drunk driving accounts for around a third of fatalities on the road. But this is just the tip of the iceberg regarding unlawful drinking and driving.

The average rate of drunk driving deaths in 2018 across the US was 182. In Arizona the year, there were 205 drunk driving-related deaths, putting them somewhat above average. This means that when you take your car out for a night on the town and get behind the wheel, you could be putting your life on the line with every mile you drive.

Drunk Driving Accident

It’s not all bad news, the rate change of deaths from 2017 to 2018 was -20.85%, meaning there were 20% fewer deaths in 2018 than there were in 2017. In 2019, more than 20% of responders to a national survey said that they knew someone who had been killed in a drunk driving accident. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, nearly 30% of all traffic accidents nationwide involve some impairment by a motorist (with BACs of over .08%). In fact, there is a drunk driving accident nearly every 45 minutes throughout the US and 290,000 injuries each year due to alcohol impairment.

25% of young drivers involved in fatal car wrecks have alcohol in their system. This percentage is much higher than any other age group, including adults over 40. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has said that one of the most frequent causes of young driver accidents is alcohol. In 2018, the AZ Youth Survey found that over 20% of kids in 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th grade reported drinking alcohol within the last 30 days. The average blood alcohol content (BAC) level of fatal drunk driving accidents is .17%, over twice the legal limit.

A new study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that the risk of being involved in a crash doubles when a driver who has been drinking has a BAC between 0.05% and 0.10%.

The Arizona Department of Transportation and the Arizona Department of Public Safety annually release statistics that break down DUI citations including those caused by alcohol, illegal drugs, medications, and more. In 2020, approximately 4.6% of accidents in Arizona involved drivers who had been drinking alcohol at the time the accident occurred. While the statistics may have been thrown off during the pandemic, we can look back and see that there were 27,653 DUI arrests in Arizona in 2018.

Statistics prove drinking and driving is an immature and irresponsible act with serious consequences. If a driver drinks and then gets behind the wheel, they cannot pay attention to the road as well as they should. They may not be able to properly judge their speed or stick to a preset course because of impaired judgment and reflexes.

Law Offices of Gary L Rohlwing is an Arizona Law Firm that offers criminal defense services for those accused of drunk driving. With over 30 years of experience, criminal defense attorney Gary Rohlwing knows that everyone deserves defense on their day in court, and he is willing to fight for you.


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