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Drunk driving statistics are quite scary, over 10,000 people die in an alcohol related death each year. Drunk and impaired driving is a serious, and oftentimes fatal, problem that plagues America’s roadways. Drivers with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 grams per deciliter (g/dL) are considered to be alcohol impaired. The legal federal drinking limit to drive is 0.08 BAC, however, many states have their own rules for penalties for any level of ingested alcohol while driving. Utah, for example, has made it illegal for drivers to operate a vehicle with a 0.05 BAC or higher.
Driving a motor vehicle after drinking any amount of alcohol is dangerous—it’s important to know the facts about alcohol impaired driving and ways to curb this preventable issue.
The Impact of Drunk Driving
Over 10,000 people are killed in alcohol-related crashes each year. In fact, there were 11,654 people killed in drunk driving crashes in 2020, equating to one death every 45 minutes. What percent of accidents are caused by drunk drivers? Drunk drivers are responsible for roughly 30% of all traffic fatalities in the United States.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), drunk driving fatalities have actually increased by 14.3% from 2019 to 2020.
Of the 11,654 drunk driving deaths in 2020:
· 7,281 (62%) drivers were alcohol impaired
· 1,543 (13%) were passengers riding with alcohol-impaired drivers
· 1,605 (14%) were occupants of other motor vehicles
· 1,225 (11%) were pedestrians, cyclists, or other nonoccupants of vehicles
This data shows that driving under the influence is a danger that isn’t going away on its own.
Underage Drunk Driving Statistics
Drinking and driving isn’t just an issue with adults. Drivers under the age of 21 make up about 10% of licensed drivers on the road but are responsible for 17% of fatal alcohol-impaired crashes[LB4] . Young adults aged 12 – 20 years old account for more than 10% of the country’s alcohol consumption, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA).
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that high school students drive intoxicated around 2.4 million times per month . Additionally, underage drivers are 17% more likely to be involved in a fatal vehicle crash when they have alcohol in their system. Over a third of fatal car crashes among young adults aged 16 – 20 involve alcohol.
Additional Drunk Driving Statistics
These sobering drunk driving statistics may make you think twice about getting behind the wheel after drinking.
· About 4.2 million American adults admit they have driven while intoxicated in the last month
· About 32 Americans die in drunk driving crashes each day
· DUI arrests are a predictor for repeat offenses—the risk of a drunk driver of being involved in an impaired driving crash increases by 20% with each DUI
· About 1/3 of the one million drunk driving arrests each year involve repeat offenders
· All drunk driving deaths are preventable
Preventing Drunk Driving Deaths with Technology and Treatment
Leveraging technology and treatment is the first step in preventing drunk driving fatalities. Alcohol monitoring technology, such as ignition interlock devices and continuous alcohol monitoring bracelets, paired with treatment is a powerful tool to help those on the road to recovery.
Making the choice to not drive drunk is integral to keeping roads safe for all drivers and pedestrians.
Driving under the influence of alcohol is dangerous and should be avoided. It is important to be aware of the risks of drunk driving and how to prevent it.
Drinking alcohol and driving is dangerous and should be avoided. It is important to be aware of the risks of drunk driving and how to prevent it.
Getting a DUI increases the risk of being in a drunk driving crash by 20% each time.
Driving while under the influence of alcohol is hazardous. We must educate ourselves on the risks of drunk driving and ways to prevent it.
Stopping drunk driving starts with Lifesafer. For more information on our IID program call our customer support experts at 800-634-3077.