A recent government survey points out that more than 4 million American adults admit to sometimes drink and drive. That means that 121 million people exceeded their alcohol limit while on the road.
Researchers said that in order to lower these numbers, stricter seat-belt laws should be imposed, even though drunk-driving laws have been helping too.
By taking a closer look at a detailed 2012 report of American health behavior, Amy Jewett and her team at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) discovered that one of the inquiries sounded like: “During the past 30 days, how many times have you driven when you’ve had perhaps too much to drink?”
Statistics show that via the extrapolation of the study, 4.2 million US adults admitted to having drunk and driven, despite the fact that some people might not have actually confessed to that. Moreover, the study did not cover adolescent drivers under the age of 18.
Jewett’s scientific team reported that alcohol-impaired driving crashes accounted for almost 1/3 of all crash fatalities in the United States. Their study was published in the CDC’s weekly bulletin on death and disease.
According to statistics, in 2013, 10.076 people died in crashes in which at least one driver had a blood alcohol concentration of (a minimum of) 0.08 grams per deciliter, the legal limit for American adult drivers.
These tests are called breathalyzers – a denomination generally used to refer to breath tests. Under implied consent law, you are obliged to take the breathalyzer test. If the authorities are faced with a refusal from a driver, their license can be suspended. Moreover, some states have no refusal programs, which may allow the officials to take the drivers to the station for a blood sample.
Nevertheless, the approximations vary by state, the highest rate having been identified in Hawaii, whereas the lowest one has been identified in Utah.
Jewett’s team also wrote that men accounted for 80 percent of episodes, with young men ranging from 21 to 34 being responsible for 32 percent of all episodes.
An association worthy of notice was made. States which allow police officials to pull over a car if they see one of the passengers not wearing a seat-belt exposed lower rates of alcohol-impaired driving.
Jewett said that seat belts were approximately 50 percent effective in preventing driver fatalities in accidents, while seat belt use is higher in states who had implemented primary seat belt wearing laws, in comparison to states where the seat belt law stands secondary.
Drivers who were always belted presented lesser alcohol-impaired rates, as opposed to those who wouldn’t wear a seat belt – the rates in the latter case were three times higher.
Altogether, the recent study implies that fatalities among alcohol-impaired drivers could be significantly lowered provided every state had a primary seat belt law.
Photo Credits aa-uk.org.uk