GA a Top Ten State for Lowest DUI Stats
The weather will soon be taking a turn for the better. We welcome Spring this week, and with it brings the start of outdoor party season. When adults gather to enjoy the beautiful weather, alcohol is often a part of the equation. That means, for some, the choice to drink and drive. Just how bad is the problem?
Arrests for driving under the influence are on the rise across the United States. The same can be said for vehicle accidents that can be attributed to alcohol. In 2015, more than 10,000 people were killed in DUI-related accidents. Injuries rose to more than 200,000. A recent study ranked the states from worst to best when it comes to drinking and driving. The good news is that Georgia ranked 40th — with the best state being 50th.
A Look at the Numbers
In the study, researchers looked at deaths attributed to drinking and driving, the number of arrests per 100,000 and self-reporting instances of DUI. The researchers then created a formula with which to rank the states. Georgia had 366 deaths linked to drinking and driving, but those deaths counted for less than a half-percent of all traffic fatalities. Using the same formula, Georgia would have ranked 31st the year before. This means that things are improving in our state.
The top five (worst) states were Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana and South Carolina. The five states with the least worries when it comes to drinking and driving were Utah, New Jersey, Illinois, Massachusetts and New York. Data for the study was gathered from MADD and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
DUIs in Georgia Dropping
While we are proud to say that Georgia ranked near the bottom, 366 deaths is still too many. Traffic fatalities related to drinking and driving are entirely avoidable and are the result of a choice made on the part of someone else. That said, drinking and driving is on its way down in Georgia, meaning something the state is doing is working. Whether it has been DUI operations or public education that has made an impact is not known. The survey only asked people if they drink before driving; it did not ask why they choose not to.
Georgia also ranked as the third lowest state in which adults self-reported having had too much to drink before getting behind the wheel at 0.7 percent. This is good news, assuming the people surveyed told the truth. It may mean that law enforcement officers are having an effect on the number of people who reconsider getting behind the wheel after a night on the town.
While some people charged with DUI are repeat offenders, the vast majority are those who made a one-time mistake — or had false allegations brought against them. Regardless, persons convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol immediately have a lifelong criminal record, are impacted financially, and may find their reputation tarnished.
If you or a loved one has been charged with driving under the influence in Atlanta, you need an experienced DUI attorney fighting by your side. Reach out to Hawkins Spizman Fortas today to schedule your appointment for a free case evaluation and discover the options available to you.