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Posts Tagged ‘drunk driving’

Drowsy Driving Crashes, Deaths on the Rise

Driving while tired similar to drunk driving.

by on Aug.10, 2016

Drivers under 25 years old are more likely the drive drowsy than any other age group.

Americans are climbing behind the wheel and piling up the miles at record levels. All of that time increases the chances of running across the driver presenting a growing threat to road safety: the drowsy driver.

A new report from the Governors Highway Safety Association partnered with State Farm Insurance highlights the effects of being tired behind the wheel: it can be as dangerous as driving drunk.

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There are 83.6 million motorists “driving tired” on a daily basis, including a third of drivers acknowledging they drive drowsy at least once a month. One out of every seven drivers admitted to nodding off while driving at least once in their lives, the report noted. (more…)

Men More Likely Than Women to Die in Car Crash

Blame alcohol as much as testosterone.

by on May.28, 2015

Men are more likely to die in a crash, and alcohol is just one of several reasons why.

After years of decline, U.S. highway fatalities have taken a jump in recent months, and that could be particularly bad news for men. Whether you blame testosterone or alcohol, male motorists are twice as likely to be killed behind the wheel as women, according to federal crash data.

Men tend to have more severe crashes than women, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports. But in comparable crashes, women are more likely than men to be killed or injured. Separate studies have shown young men are particularly prone to being involved in fatal crashes, and the new NHTSA report indicates that the gap between men and women narrows with age.

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Federal researchers focused on crash data from 2012, a year in which 33,541 Americans were killed on the nation’s roadways. That broke down to 23,808 men and just 9,733 women.

The NHTSA study pointed to a variety of factors that could lie behind this gender gap: (more…)

Parents Modeling Bad Driving Habits to Teens

Distracted driving practices influence kids’ behaviors.

by on Aug.08, 2014

Teens mimic the behavior of their parents, especially when it comes to distracted driving.

While many parents often concentrate on what kind of vehicle will keep their teen drivers the safest, it’s poor behaviors they exhibit behind the wheel that make the biggest difference in safety and teens learn many of those habits from their parents.

While parents may think they’re setting a good example for their teens, these findings suggest that some parents engage in unsafe driving habits more often than they might admit,” said Dave Melton, driving safety expert with Liberty Mutual Insurance and managing director of global safety.

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“Research shows that teens often replicate their parents’ poor driving behaviors, so it’s critical for the safety of everyone on the road that parents be a model for responsible driving whenever they are behind the wheel.” (more…)

Americans Admit to Dangerous Behaviors While Driving

Poll shows more people recognizing distracted driving.

by on Jun.20, 2014

Americans appear to be taking a harsher view of what constitutes distracted driving, although they're not as stringent with their own behavior.

The increase in what Americans define as dangerous behavior while driving continues to become more stringent, but their resolve to stop these behaviors isn’t growing at the same rate.

A recent Harris Poll shows that people are taking a harsher view on drinking while driving and distracted driving. In fact, 94% of Americans believe that driving after having three or more drinks is dangerous, while 68% feel the same way about having one or two drinks.

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However, knowing what’s wrong and doing something about it are two different things. (more…)

Children at Biggest Risk When the Drunk is Their Driver

Most children aren’t buckled up when a crash occurs.

by on May.06, 2014

A drunk driving crash.

When a drunk driver killed a Houston boy over the weekend it was yet another in a seemingly series of instances in an intoxicated motorist slams into another vehicle, bicycle, even a day care center, crashes that add up to the deaths of hundreds of youths each year.

But a separate Texas crash late last March was far more indicative of the dangers of drunk driving. Police in the town of Irving arrested 30-year-old Crystal Suniga and charged her with drunk driving and manslaughter after she lost control of her vehicle and slammed into two parked cars killing two of her four children inside.

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“Despite what’s commonly thought, it’s not a family in one car and a drunk driver in another,” said Dr. Kyran Quinlan, of Northwestern University, the lead author of a new study that indicates fully two-thirds of those under the age of 15 who are killed in crashes involving a drunk driver were actually in the car being driven by the intoxicated motorist.


The World’s Oddest Driving Laws

Don’t drive blindfolded in Alabama - but it's okay to shoot a whale in Tennessee.

by on Feb.24, 2014

You can still get away with a swig of beer while driving in a few states.

Years back, during my first visit to Colorado, a friend greeted me at the airport and handed me a beer, opening another for himself as he slipped behind the wheel.  There was a time when it was legal to drink while driving in a number of states. Most have since banned the practice as part of the broader crackdown on drunk driving — but not all.

Six states, including West Virginia and Missouri, still allow drinking while driving. And Louisiana has what’s known as the “daiquiri exemption.” You can have one in your hand as long as the lid remains in place and there’s no straw visible.

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There are plenty of strange – and often ignored – laws on the books across the country, and some even stranger ones abroad. While some probably made sense when they were passed — at least to some legislative sponsor — it’s hard to imagine who might have decided it was necessary to ban driving blindfolded, or thought it a good idea to punish drivers who stop at pedestrian crossings.


RoboCop Orders Drivers to Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over

Feds team with automakers to make alcohol detection system.

by on Dec.24, 2013

RoboCop is warning drivers to "drive sober or get pulled over" as part of an ad campaign about law enforcement efforts to crackdown on drunk driving.

New cars and trucks are safer than ever, but now the Obama administration is focusing on making drivers safer by enlisting the help of the nation’s best-known policeman: RoboCop.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is about to unleash a $7.5-million ad campaign featuring RoboCop reminding folks to “drive sober or get pulled over” and that police departments across the country will be cracking down on the behavior between now and Jan. 1.

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In 2012, deaths in crashes involving drunken drivers increased 4.6% to 10,322 deaths – the first increase in six years – and above the overall 3.3% increase in road deaths in 2012. (more…)

Louisiana is Home to the Worst Drivers in the US

South Carolina and Mississippi round out top three on dubious list.

by on Dec.18, 2013

The State of Louisiana is home to the nation's worst drivers, according to a recent study. It is the second year in a row they've captured the dubious honor.

Anyone who has driven outside of their home state believes they’ve been to the place with the worst drivers in the country. However, statistically speaking, unless you picked Louisiana, you would be wrong.

For the second consecutive year, residents in the Sportsman’s Paradise finished atop the list of states with the worst drivers, according to a study by CarInsuranceComparison.com.

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The study examines five categories of bad driving: fatalities rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled; failure to obey traffic signals and seat belts; drunk driving; tickets; and careless driving. (more…)

Feds Want Ignition Interlocks for Drunk Drivers

NHTSA chief aims to protect “sober motorists.”

by on Dec.18, 2013

A motorist uses an ignition interlock that can detect a drunk driver.

The nation’s top auto safety manager wants to ramp up the crackdown on drunk drivers, and is urging that all states begin requiring ignition interlocks for anyone convicted of a driving under the influence, even after a first-time offense.

There has been a concerted effort to keep drunks off the road in recent years, targeting what has traditionally been one of the most significant causes of fatal accidents. And the number of fatalities related to the problem has fallen from more than 21,000 annually in the early 80% — accounting for more than 50% of all road deaths, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration – to around 10,000 in recent years, a third of traffic fatalities.

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All 50 states and the District of Columbia now make use of ignition interlocks – which are designed to prevent a vehicle from starting if the driver was drinking. But the rules on who must use the devices varies.  In Michigan, for example, only those convicted of having blood-alcohol levels of 0.17, double the legal definition of driving under the influence, must use an interlock. In West Virginia, an interlock can be used for a first-time offender at a judge’s discretion.   Other states only target repeat offenders.


Teen Drinking and Driving Falls by Half

But 20% of teens involved in fatal crashes still used alcohol.

by on Oct.03, 2012

Night time is the wrong time for teenage drivers.

Emergency crews struggle to save teens involved in a nighttime accident.

The number of teens who drink and then drive has fallen by more than half over the last two decades, according to a new study, but there is still a problem with teens “binge drinking” before climbing behind the wheel, it cautions.

And officials with the Centers for Disease Control stressed that even with fewer drunk teen drivers, car crashes remain the leading cause of death for those between the ages of 16 and 19.


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“There is a broader recognition that drinking and driving is not okay. There is now a sense that friends don’t let friends drink and drive,” said CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden in a media conference call.