Thousands of people die every year from alcohol-related driving accidents. The number of deaths from alcohol-impaired driving has risen in recent years. More people died in drunk driving crashes in the first quarter of 2022 than in the first quarter of 2002, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
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In 2020, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that there were 11,654 fatal drunk driving crashes across the country. These numbers include both drunk drivers who were killed and drunk drivers who were injured. However, these figures do not reflect the actual number of people who were injured in the accidents. In addition, they do not indicate the number of alcohol-impaired drivers who were convicted of causing these crashes. The NHTSA also reported that nearly one-third of these crashes were caused by repeat offenders.
The NHTSA estimates that one person dies in a drunk driving crash every 50 minutes. This means that 30 people die from drunk driving every day. These numbers do not account for the fact that two out of three people will be involved in a drunk driving accident in their lifetime.
The number of alcohol-related fatalities is relatively low, however, in comparison to the number of overall vehicle fatalities. Those under the age of 21 are more likely to be killed in a drunk driving crash than the average age group. The rate of alcohol impairment among fatal crashes is 3.1 times higher at night. In addition, the age group with the highest proportion of alcohol-impaired drivers in fatal crashes is 25 to 34-year-olds. Those aged 16 to 24 years old are also at a high risk of being involved in an alcohol-impaired driving crash. 36% of all traffic deaths involving people between the ages of 16 and 24 were caused by an alcohol-impaired driver.
The majority of alcohol-related fatal crashes occurred on non-interstate roads, but some happened on interstates. A significant portion of these crashes happened on county roads. The majority of fatal crashes also occurred in clear/cloudy conditions. There was a few percent of these crashes were caused by rainy or snowy weather. A small percentage of these crashes happened at dusk or dawn.
The most common time for these crashes to occur is during the summer months. During the Fourth of July, there were more fatal crashes involving alcohol than on any other holiday. A large number of these crashes also happened at night.
The highest percentage of alcohol-impaired drivers in fatal crashes were motorcycle riders. In addition, the highest percentage of fatal crashes were involving passenger cars and light trucks. In addition, a large percentage of these crashes happened in urban areas. The lowest percentage of these crashes were involving large trucks.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has been tracking these statistics since 1982. It is estimated that there are 121 million alcohol-related driving incidents every year. In addition, there are approximately 120,000 emergency rooms that treat young people who are injured by alcohol.