STATISTICS

Fight back against misinformation. Get the facts.

The numbers don’t lie. The destructive force of drunk and drugged driving must end.

  • Stats
  • Alcohol Impairment
  • Arrests
  • Children
  • Demographics
  • Drugged Driving
  • Drunk Driving
  • General
  • Time of Day
  • Under 21 Drinking
  • Under 21 Drivers

MADD has helped save nearly 30,000 young lives through passage of the 21 minimum drinking age law.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Lives Saved in 2011 by Restraint Use and Minimum Drinking Age Laws”. DOT 811 169. Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2012. http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/811702.pdf

Every two minutes, a person is injured in a drunk driving crash.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “The Economic and Societal Impact Of Motor Vehicle Crashes, 2010.” National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, May 2014, DOT HS 812 013. http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/812013.pdf.

Every day in America, another 29 people die as a result of drunk driving crashes. That’s one person every 50 minutes.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2017: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2018. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630

Drugs other than alcohol (e.g., marijuana and cocaine) are involved in about 18% of motor vehicle driver deaths.

(NHTSA, 2010)

A standard drink is defined as 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits, which contain the same amount of alcohol.

(National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Alcohol Screening and Brief Intervention in the Medical Setting.” DOT HS 809 467. Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, July 2002.)

Alcohol levels above the legal limit were found in 21% of such drivers.

(NHTSA, 2010)

In 2017, a total of 1,147 children 14 and younger were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes. Of those 1,147 fatalities, 220 (19%) occurred in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes. Out of those 220 deaths, 118 (54%) were occupants of vehicles with drivers who had BACs of .08 or higher, and another 29 children (13%) were pedestrians or pedal-cyclists struck by drivers with BACs of .08 or higher. 71 (32%) were occupants of other vehicles, and 2 (1%) were drivers.

NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts 2017 https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630

Adults drank too much and drove about 121 million times per year – over 300,000 incidents of drinking and driving a day.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Alcohol-Impaired Driving Among Adults — United States, 2012.” Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. August 7, 2015 / 64(30);814-817. http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6430a2.htm

In 2017, 9 percent of all drivers involved in fatal crashes during the day were drunk, compared to 32 percent at night. In addition, almost twice as many alcohol-related traffic fatalities occurred during the weekends compared to weekdays.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2017: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2017. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630

In 2013, 28.7 million people admitted to driving under the influence of alcohol – that’s more than the population of Texas

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Results from the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Summary of National Findings. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2014. http://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/NSDUHresultsPDFWHTML2013/Web/NSDUHresults2013.pdf

Almost 7% of drivers, mostly under age 35, who were involved in fatal traffic crashes tested positive for THC, the principle ingredient in marijuana.

(NHTSA, 2010)

Over a quarter of 8th graders have tried alcohol.

Miech, R. A., Johnston, L. D., O’Malley, P. M., Bachman, J. G., & Schulenberg, J. E. (2015). Monitoring the Future national survey results on drug use, 1975-2014: Volume I, Secondary school students. Ann Arbor: Institute for Social Research, The University of Michigan, 599 pp.

About one in seven teens binge drinks, yet only 1 in 100 parents believe his or her teen binge drinks.

Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. (2015). Behavioral health trends in the United States: Results from the 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (HHS Publication No. SMA 15-4927, NSDUH Series H-50). http://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/NSDUH-FRR1-2014/NSDUH-FRR1-2014.pdf

On average, two in three people will be involved in a drunk driving crash in their lifetime.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “The Economic and Societal Impact Of Motor Vehicle Crashes, 2010.” National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, May 2014, DOT HS 812 013. http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/812013.pdf.

Over 40% of all 10th graders drink alcohol.

Miech, R. A., Johnston, L. D., O’Malley, P. M., Bachman, J. G., & Schulenberg, J. E. (2015). Monitoring the Future national survey results on drug use, 1975-2014: Volume I, Secondary school students. Ann Arbor: Institute for Social Research, The University of Michigan, 599 pp.

Each day, people drive drunk more than 300,000 times, but only about 2800 are arrested

Arrest data: Federal Bureau of Investigation, “Crime in the United States: 2015” https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2015/crime-in-the-u.s.-2015/tables/table-29Incidence data: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Alcohol-Impaired Driving Among Adults — United States, 2012.” Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. August 7, 2015 / 64(30);814-817. http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6430a2.

About a quarter of car crashes with teens involve an underage drinking driver. Ninety-five percent of the 14 million people who are alcohol dependent began drinking before the legal age of 21.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2013: Overview”. Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2015. http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/812169.pdf National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2013: Young Drivers”. Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2015. http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/812200.pdf

57% of fatally injured drivers had alcohol and/or other drugs in their system – 17% had both.

(NHTSA, 2010)

In the United States, the number of drunk driving deaths has been cut in half since MADD was founded in 1980.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2014: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2016. http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/812231.pdf

Over 1.1 million drivers were arrested in 2014 for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics.

Federal Bureau of Investigation, “Crime in the United States: 2014.” https://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2014/crime-in-the-u.s.-2014/tables/table-29

The rate of drunk driving is highest among 26 to 29 year olds (20.7 percent).

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Results from the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Summary of National Findings. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2014. http://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/NSDUHresultsPDFWHTML2013/Web/NSDUHresults2013.pdf

Each day, people drive drunk more than 300,000 times, but only about 3200 are arrested.

Arrest data: Federal Bureau of Investigation, “Crime in the United States: 2014” https://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2014/crime-in-the-u.s.-2014/tables/table-29 Incidence data: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Alcohol-Impaired Driving Among Adults — United States, 2012.” Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. August 7, 2015 / 64(30);814-817. http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6430a2.htm

Youth who start drinking before age 15 years are six times more likely to develop alcohol dependence or abuse later in life than those who begin drinking at or after age 21 years.

Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Detailed Tables. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Rockville, MD; 2016.

In 2014, 10.1 million people reported driving under the influence of illicit drugs in the past year.

Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol and Illicit Drugs. 2014. https://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/report_2688/ShortReport-2688.html

The drug showing the greatest increase among drivers from 2007 to 2013/2014 was marijuana (THC). The percentage of THC-positive drivers increased from 8.6 percent in 2007 to 12.6 percent in 2013/2014, a proportional increase of 47 percent.

(NHTSA 2013-2014 Roadside Survey)

Since 1980 MADD has saved 380,000 lives …and counting.

(Fell, 1995 and NHTSA FARS data) Full cite: Fell J.C. (1995), “What’s New in Alcohol, Drugs and Traffic Safety in the U.S.?” National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Proceedings of 13th Conference, International Council on Alcohol, Drugs and Traffic Safety, ICADTS, NHMRC Road Accident Research Unit, University of Adelaide, Australia, C.N. Kloeden and A. J. McLean…

Teen alcohol use kills 4,300 people each year – that’s more than all illegal drugs combined.

Sacks JJ, Gonzales KR, Bouchery EE, Tomedi LE, Brewer RD. 2010 National and State Costs of Excessive Alcohol Consumption. Am J Prev Med 2015; 49(5):e73–e79.

In 2017, three times as many males were arrested for drunk driving as females (569,148 v 195,421).

FBI Arrests 2017, Table 42 https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2017/crime-in-the-u.s.-2017/topic-pages/tables/table-42

More than a third of teens mistakenly believe they drive better under the influence of marijuana.

(Liberty Mutual/SADD poll of 1,708 teens in the 11th and 12th grades. Margin of error is +/- 2.16 percentage points.) Janet Loehrke, USA TODAY.

Drunk driving involvement in fatal crashes in 2017 was almost four times higher at night than during the day (32 v 9 percent).

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2017: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2017. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630

In fatal crashes in 2017, the highest percentage of drunk drivers was for drivers ages 21 to 24 (27 percent), followed by ages 25 to 34 (26 percent) and 35 to 44 (23 percent).

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2017: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2017. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630

Only time will sober a person up. Drinking strong coffee, exercising or taking a cold shower will not help.

(Michigan State University. “Basic Alcohol Information.” East Lansing, MI: Michigan State University, 2003.)

An average drunk driver has driven drunk over 80 times before first arrest.

Arrest data: Federal Bureau of Investigation, “Crime in the United States: 2014” https://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2014/crime-in-the-u.s.-2014/tables/table-29 Incidence data: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Alcohol-Impaired Driving Among Adults — United States, 2012.” Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. August 7, 2015 / 64(30);814-817. http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6430a2.htm

About one-third of all drivers arrested or convicted of drunk driving are repeat offenders.

(Fell, Jim. “Repeat DWI Offenders in the United States.” Washington, DC: National Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Traffic Tech No. 85, February 1995.)

During weekday daytime, 12.1% of drivers tested positive for an illegal drug; 10.3% tested positive for prescription and OTC medications. During weekend nighttime, 15.2% of drivers tested positive for an illegal drug; 7.3% tested positive for prescription and OTC medications.

(NHTSA 2013-2014 Roadside Survey)

In 2017, 10,874 people died in drunk driving crashes – one every 48 minutes – and more than 300,000 were injured in drunk driving crashes.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2017: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2017. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630

Almost half of all drivers who were killed in crashes and tested positive for drugs also had alcohol in their system.

Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol and Illicit Drugs. 2014. https://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/report_2688/ShortReport-2688.html

In 2017, there were four male alcohol-impaired drivers involved in crashes for every female alcohol-impaired driver involved (8,022 vs. 1,944)

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2017: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2017. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630

50 to 75 percent of convicted drunk drivers continue to drive on a suspended license.

(Peck, R.C., Wilson, R. J., and Sutton, L. 1995. “Driver license strategies for controlling the persistent DUI offender, Strategies for Dealing with the intent Drinking Driver.” Transportation Research Board, Transportation Research Circular No. 437. Washington, D.C. National Research Council: 48-49 and Beck, KH, et al. “Effects of Ignition Interlock License Restrictions on Drivers with Multiple…

In 2013, 9.9 million people (3.8% of the population) reported driving under the influence of illicit drugs. This was highest among 18-25 year olds, where 10.6% reported driving under the influence of illicit drugs.

(SAMHSA’s 2013 NSUDH survey)

Kids who start drinking young are seven times more likely to be in an alcohol-related crash.

Hingson, Ralph, et al. “Age of Drinking Onset, Driving After Drinking, and Involvement in Alcohol-Related Motor Vehicle Crashes.” DOT HS 809 188. Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, January 2001.

MADD compassionately provides a supportive service to a victim every 3 minutes.

Internal MADD tracking data, 2018.

Drunk driving costs the united states $132 billion a year.

MADD 5th Anniversary Report to the Nation, 2011. http://www.talklikemadd.org/books/statereport/#/4/

Every day about 800 people are injured in a drunk driving crash.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2017: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2017. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630  

About 4,000 drivers are killed each year with drugs in their systems. This doesn’t count those who had drugs in their system without test results, or those killed by drivers with drugs in their system.

(NHTSA, 2010)

Drunk driving costs each adult in the united states over $500 per year.

MADD 5th Anniversary Report to the Nation, 2011. http://www.talklikemadd.org/books/statereport/#/4/

Impairment is not determined by the type of drink, but rather by the amount of alcohol drunk over time.

(Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. “Q&A: Alcohol: General.” Arlington, VA: National Highway Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, March 2012.)

More than 22% of drivers tested positive for illegal, prescription, or over-the-counter drugs in blood and/or oral fluid tests.

(NHTSA 2013-2014 Roadside Survey)

In 2017, 15 percent of all drivers involved in fatal crashes during the week were drunk, compared to 28 percent on weekends.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts 2017: Alcohol-Impaired Driving.” Washington DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2017. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812630

The average person metabolizes alcohol at the rate of about one drink per hour.

(Michigan State University. “Basic Alcohol Information.” East Lansing, MI: Michigan State University, 2003.)

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