California Has Some of the Highest Fatal DUI Rates in the Country


The Law Offices of Taylor and Taylor continually emphasize the importance of having a sober mind when behind the wheel of a vehicle. However, despite our cautionary tales, there are many people who still make the decision to operate a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. This puts both them and other people at risk of severe injuries and, in the worst cases, death.

While DUI incidents occur around the U.S., there are several cities in California particularly that have higher-than-average DUI rates. Figures from recent findings illustrate that, over the past few decades, there has been a death caused by drunk driving every 50 minutes. That equates to approximately 29 deaths per day as a result of DUI-related incidents. Having said that, reports have shown that there has been a decrease in DUI deaths over the past seven years. This can be attributed to an increased awareness about the tragic consequences, the option of ride-sharing services, and stricter penalties for those charged with driving under the influence.

Figures show that there is a serious recurring problem with drunk driving in the state of California, with eight of its cities featured in the top 25 cities for DUIs. This means that California alone contains over 30% of the entries on this list!

Even more concerning are the fatal DUI rates. For many southern California cities, they experience DUI death rates of more than 2x the statewide average. Considering the average is 1.77 fatalities per 100,000 residents, this is a big cause for concern. We urge you to practice caution when driving, and especially in these cities.

Where Are the Highest Fatal DUI Rates in California?

To break down the statistics to more digestible pieces, I decided to focus this blog on the large cities in the state where fatal DUI accidents are likely to occur. You can find more information on medium and small cities on Value Penguin.

So, which places fill out the top 5 on this list? They include:

1. Hesperia

Hesperia, located in San Bernardino County, is considered the top worst city for fatal DUI crashes. Its fatality rate is 234% greater than the statewide average, coming in with 5.18 deaths per 100,000 residents. It is interesting to note that the popular Interstate 15 runs through this place, possibly contributing to the increased DUI fatalities.

2. Hemet

Located in Riverside County, Hemet comes in at a close second. It experiences 5.09 DUI deaths per 100,000 residents. In 2017 alone, the city lost six residents to DUI-related incidents. Oakland has almost 5x more residents and yet, Hemet has higher fatal DUI rates.

3. Bakersfield

Situated in Kern County, Bakersfield comes in third. Per 100,000 residents, there are 4.60 DUI deaths that occur. During the period from 2015 to 2017, there were 48 reported DUI-related deaths in the area.

4. San Bernardino

The county seat and namesake of San Bernardino County, this city ranked highly at fourth among the large cities in California. One contributing factor could be the high rate of student-owned cars in the region and the variables associated with that.

5. Paramount

Located in Los Angeles County, Paramount rounds out the top 5 worst large CA cities for DUI deaths. It has seen a 40% increase in DUI fatalities in the past three years, compared with the previous period.

Keeping You Up To Date on DUIs

Despite these worrying figures, the rate of DUI convictions has been decreasing on a national basis. It is our hope that we at the Law Offices of Taylor and Taylor can continue to increase awareness on the dangers of drinking and driving. We strive to keep you up to date on the latest events in the DUI field, including prominent cases, legislation, enforcement, and technology. And in the unfortunate case that you do end up in a DUI crash, just know that you can rely on the expertise and presence of our team.

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