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Drunk Driving in the United States

June 5, 2011

When you decide to pick up those keys and drive after drinking alcohol, think of the how you will affect your own life and potentially the lives of other drivers on the road.You could be pulled over by a police officer and arrested, charged with a DUI/DWI, resulting in jail time, lose of employment, and shame. Worse case scenario you are in a car accident killing yourself or another person and being arrested, charged with vehicular manslaughter, serving jail time.  Don’t allow your self to get to this point, if you feel you have a problem with alcohol seek help within a local Alcohol Rehabilitation Program today.

In 2009 over 33,808 people have died in alcohol-related collisions in the United States according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In the US that is over 32% of the total traffic deaths, that is 4 out of every 100,000 people, on average someone is killed in an alcohol-impaired driving crash about every 50 minutes. In 2003 NHTSA reported 275,000 people were injured in alcohol related accidents. In 1996, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, local law enforcement agencies made an nationwide estimate of 1,467,300 arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol.

The top 5 worst states for Drunk Driving

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that states having the worst drunk driving rates by which has the highest drunk driving death tolls. The top 5 worst states for drunk driving are Montana, South Carolina, Mississippi, Wyoming and Louisiana.

  1. Montana reported 3,264 arrested for DUI in 2007. 123 fatalities in crashes due to drunk driving in 2007, that’s 11.07 drunken driving-related deaths that year for every 100,000 people living in the state. The state has over 80% rural road with its drivers reaching speeds over 55mph, their emergency response typically takes over an hour making accidents in Montana more likely to be fatal.
  2. South Carolina reported 11,712 arrested for DUI. 528 fatalities in crashes due to drunk driving in 2007, that’s 10.5 alcohol-related fatalities per 100,000 people living in the state.
  3. Mississippi reported 7,881 arrested for DUI. 364 fatalities in crashes due to drunk driving in 2007, that’s 10.35 alcohol-related fatalities per 100,000 people in the state.
  4. Wyoming reported 6,116 arrested for DUI. 56 fatalities in crashes due to drunk driving in 2007, that’s 9.37 alcohol related fatalities per 100,000 people in the state (this state has the lowest population out of all states in US, only 522,830 residents as of 2007). Wyoming is known as a “bridge”, where many travelers passing through the state contributing to the number of fatalities.
  5. Louisiana reported 8,725 arrested for DUI. 445 fatalities in crashes due to drunk driving in 2007, that’s 8.57 alcohol related fatalities per 100,000 people in the state.

The Law

DUI  or DWI are the criminal offense of operating a motor vehicle while being under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. Alcohol level is the threshold point for an independent criminal offense in all states in the United States. The person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is .08% or higher is grounds to charge for DUI or DWI in most states. Driving while ability is impaired, a BAC of .05% or above but less than .08%,  is a lesser charge in some states.

Don’t make the mistake of drinking and driving

Drinking and driving is a killer of many Americans, don’t allow yourself to be another statistic because you thought you were “OK” to drive. Law enforcement threw out the United States are on the look out for drunk drivers. A DUI conviction is cause for possible jail time and fines, in addition your insurance policy can be revoked and rates become unaffordable and possibly being forced to get SR-22 insurance. You risk loosing employment. The respect of friends and family will be gone.

Next time you are in a situation where you have been drinking and considering driving remember the legal ramifications of you actions as well as the possibility of taking the life of another or you own. Put the keys down and call a cab.

If you feel you have an alcohol problem, alcoholism, contact your local Alcohol rehabilitation center for help. They will educate you on the effects of alcohol and provide you with consoling and an relaxed environment to over come alcohol and take back your life.

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