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Drunk Walking Just as Dangerous as Drunk Driving?


I’ve said it countless times on this blog; if you’ve been drinking, find alternative means home. The reason is twofold. One, avoid law enforcement and avoid DUI charges. And two, eliminate the risk of injury or death as the result of your intoxication. If your alternative means of getting home safe is to just walk, new data suggests that it might not be all that safe.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently released data showing that there were 4,432 pedestrian fatalities in 2011. Of those unfortunate pedestrians, 1,547 had blood alcohol content levels over the legal driving limit of 0.08 percent. In other words, 35 percent of pedestrians killed in 2011 had blood alcohol content levels above 0.08 percent. Compare this to the 31 percent of traffic fatalities resulting from drivers whose blood alcohol content was above a 0.08 percent. What’s more, half of pedestrians killed between the ages of 25 and 34 had blood alcohol content levels above the legal driving limit.

Does this mean that drunk walking is less safe than drunk driving?

Not necessarily. Although the percentage of traffic deaths resulting from drunk driving was 31 percent, that percentage translates to a whopping 9,878 drunk driving deaths in 2011.

“What [the data] says to us is that nationally we’ve done a good job of educating people about the dangers of drunk driving, but we haven’t done such a good job of reminding them that other drunk behavior, including walking, can be just as dangerous,” said Jonathan Adkins, spokesman for the Governors Highway Safety Association.

Other data shows that pedestrian deaths have risen slightly in recent years. Looking at the situation through the glass half full, one could argue that, while no fatality statistic is a good one, the trend indicates that anti-drunk driving efforts are working and people are choosing to walk home drunk instead of drive home drunk.

The post Drunk Walking Just as Dangerous as Drunk Driving? appeared first on Law Offices of Taylor and Taylor - DUI Central.

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