A recent report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that drunk driving accident fatalities reached record lows last year. While that decline is a welcome change from past years, drunk driving statistics show 10,142 Americans lost their lives in alcohol-related crashes in 2021 ― and even one death is too many.
The Auto Channel recently published rankings of the states with the worst drunk driving problems. Let’s take a deeper look at the data and discuss how to keep yourself safe on Alabama roads.
Which State Has the Most Drunk Driving Accidents?
Wyoming topped the rankings as the worst state for drunk driving crashes. In one recent year, the state had the highest DUI fatality rate and the third-highest DUI arrest rate in the nation.
Here are the top 10 worst states for drunk driving:
- South Dakota
- North Dakota
- New Mexico
Deadly Trends Among the Worst States for Drunk Driving
Sadly, the top six states were the same year over year, which means driving is still dangerous for residents and travelers on those roadways.
On a better note, half of the worst-rated states saw annual decreases in their DUI fatality rates:
- Wyoming (#1) ― 26 percent decrease
- North Dakota (#4) ― 38 percent decrease
- New Mexico (#6) ― 4 percent decrease
- Idaho (#8) ― 9 percent decrease
- Missouri (#10) ― 3 percent decrease
Closer to home, Alabama experienced double-digit declines in DUI arrest rates two years in a row.
Least Dangerous States for Drunk Driving
The states that ranked among the least dangerous for drunk driving accidents included:
- Rhode Island
- New York
- New Jersey
Four states ― Alabama, Illinois, Georgia, and Pennsylvania ― went unranked because they did not report crime data from all over the state.
Drunk Driving Causes and Consequences
Some common reasons drivers choose to get behind the wheel after drinking include:
- Failure to gauge their level of impairment
- False sense of confidence due to intoxication
- Not wanting to leave a car behind
- Believing there is no other way to get home
Regardless of the reasons, drunk driving can lead to accidents that change lives forever. When a drunk driver hurts or kills someone in Alabama, they could face civil penalties through a personal injury lawsuit from the victim or the victim’s family. Drunk driving also has criminal consequences that may include:
- Monetary fines
- Jail time
- Driver’s license suspension or revocation
- Installation of an ignition interlock device (IID)
- Lost job opportunities
- Damage to reputation
How States Can Combat Drunk Driving
Alabama and other states can reduce or prevent drunk driving accidents and needless fatalities by:
- Announcing and implementing sobriety checkpoints
- Conducting high-visibility police patrols in problem areas
- Requiring IIDs for convicted DUI offenders
- Encouraging alcohol treatment and intervention programs
- Launching school alcohol-education programs
Injured In a Crash? Contact Bence Law Firm
Phenix City drunk driving injury attorney David Bence has extensive experience representing individuals who suffered injuries in accidents in Russell County and beyond. Don’t hire a lawyer or a law firm that will treat you like a number. Instead, Bence Law Firm for the personalized and attentive representation you deserve. We’ll get to know you, understand your case, and fight for maximum compensation for you. Call our office or contact us online for a free consultation.