Regardless of which country you live in, drunk driving is a serious issue. Each year, thousands of people are killed in alcohol-related traffic crashes. This has a profound impact on families across the nation. The CDC indicates that effective DUI laws, media campaigns, and sobriety checkpoints reduce the number of drivers impaired by alcohol.
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In the United States, a staggering 28 people die every day in a drunk driving accidents. While the rate of fatal accidents is declining, the percentage of deaths caused by alcohol impairment is still high. According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are approximately 10,000 people are killed annually in alcohol-related traffic crashes. However, the numbers are expected to decrease over the next few years.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a staggering one-third of all traffic crashes involve drunk driving. Men are much more likely to be involved in a drunk driving crash than women. Moreover, the age group of 21 to 24 is the most at-risk for drinking and driving. 27% of fatal alcohol-impaired crashes involve drivers between the ages of 21 and 24.
In Europe, drunk drivers are responsible for nearly two-thirds of all traffic fatalities. Although the rates of death from alcohol impairment are decreasing, the rate remains high for a developed nation. The CDC studied 19 wealthy countries, comparing data from the World Health Organization and Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.
The US is not in the best shape when it comes to drinking and driving. In 2016, the fatality rate on American roads was lower than it was in 2000. The CDC determined that a lower rate of road fatalities in the country compared to the rest of the world is a result of effective drunk driving laws and treatment programs. Moreover, the study indicated that sobriety checkpoints and ignition interlocks reduced the number of drunk drivers.
Other countries make it more difficult for those convicted of a DUI to get back on the road. In some of these countries, there is no specific time limit for a DUI, and there is a low tolerance for a drunk driver. In some cases, these countries test drivers only when police suspect an alcohol presence. This may lead to some bias when estimating the percentage of alcohol-related road deaths.
Some countries do not report statistics on alcohol involvement in fatal crashes. In other countries, post-mortem results are not used. This means that a significant number of traffic crash victims are not included in official statistics. This could affect international comparisons.
The top three countries for drunk driving deaths are the US, Canada, and France. In 2015, Canada ranked second. The CDC found that the rate of drunk driving fatalities in the country was lower than the rates of the other two countries.
In contrast, South Africa has been rated as the worst country for drunk driving. This is because the CDC analyzed data from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. The country had the highest proportion of alcohol-related roadway deaths. The CDC also analyzed data on seat belt use.