DUI Statistics in the United States
Total DUI has answers to commonly asked questions about DUI and resources with links to some of the most informative places on the web.
The actual number of people who drive while in the influence of drugs or alcohol is impossible to estimate. When looking at DUI statistics, government agencies look instead to estimations of fatal crashes where alcohol was a likely contributor.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is responsible for keeping the DUI statistics that are most often quoted in a wide range of media, and by organizations advocating harsher drunk driving legislation.
NHTSA DUI Statistics
According to the NHTSA's most recent information from 2010, a person died every 51 minutes due to an alcohol-related crash. That's more than 10,000 people who died due to drinking and driving crashes.
They also report that these crashes cost more than $37 billion each year.
The other major measure of national DUI statistics to note is the NHTSA measure of alcohol-related fatalities per vehicle miles of travel (VMT). This measure makes good sense because it accounts for people's driving habits, instead of just looking at population numbers. According to their most recent study of the topic, published in February 2008, alcohol-related fatalities held steady for 2005 and 2006 at 0.45 per million VMT. In 2006, the actual number of alcohol-related fatalities was estimated to be 13,470.
The Nature of DUI Statistics
As with any set of statistics, be sure to look closely at any statistics involving DUI.
We detailed a few misleading numbers for alcohol-related fatalities published by Mothers Against Drunk Driving that included anyone involved in a fatal crash who had consumed alcohol, when the statistics implied that the drivers had been DUI and killed someone.
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