By Bailey Faulkner
Spring is almost here, marking the beginning of the season of barbeques, outdoor activities, parties and drinking. That also means that, like every year, there will be an increase in drinking and driving across the country.
To help spread awareness about the issue, BackgroundChecks.org set out to compile information about each state’s drinking and driving habits. Using data from the CDC, Department of Transportation and local state organizations, the site created comprehensive drinking and driving scores for each state.
According to data compiled late last year from the CDC and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), DUIs were on the rise in 2016. In 2015, over 10,000 people were killed and another 200,000 were directly injured by drivers under the influence, according to data from the two groups.
“The fact that over 10,000 people a year die from DUI-related accidents is a travesty,” said coauthor of the research Trent Wilson. “We hope this research will open some eyes and make people think twice before drinking and driving.”
To determine scores for each state, BackgroundChecks.org used “a combination of deaths directly attributable to DUIs, DUI arrests per 100,000 people and drinking too much before driving, as reported by drivers themselves.”
After creating a weighted formula based on the research, the site arrived at scores for each state. North Carolina placed #15 on the list, meaning that only 14 other states had worse drinking and driving habits, according to the formula used for the study.
The study found that 411 fatalities resulted from drinking and driving in North Carolina during the year, which accounted for 0.30% of all traffic fatalities in the state. The rate of fatalities from drinking and driving in NC increased by 13.2% from the previous year. The state had 35,967 DUI arrests during the period, with the DUI death rate (per 100,000) at 4.05. The DUI arrest rate (per 100,000) for NC came in at 354, with 1.2% of adults reporting drinking too much before driving.
Check out BackgroundChecks.org’s data map of drinking habits in the U.S.
The ten states with the worst drinking and driving problems are as follows:
- North Dakota
- South Dakota
- South Carolina
- New Mexico
The ten states with the least drinking and driving problems are as follows:
- New York
- New Jersey
- Rhode Island
If you would like to see a more detailed breakdown of the research’s findings, click here to visit BackgroundChecks.org’s page on the study.
BackgroundChecks.org is “devoted to public safety, online privacy, home security, and open government.” The group continuously gathers new data and research on issues directly affecting public welfare.
Click here to learn more about BackgroundChecks.org.