Wednesday, December 10, 2008

California DUI crashes soar for young women

California DUI criminal defense lawyers report California DUI / drunk driving crashes 'soar' for young women.

The Automobile Club of Southern California released a study today with some alarming numbers: Over the last decade, more young women in California are dying in alcohol-related car crashes.

Some excerpts from the press release:

--The number of people who died as result of drunk female drivers ages 21 to 24 was 1,037 in 1998 and rose to 1,515 in 2007. That's an increase of 46%.

--Alcohol-related deaths for men over the same time period increased 18%.

--Female drunk drivers ages 18 to 20 were involved in 74% more crashes in 2007 than in 1998.

More women getting driver's licenses and driving more, and more women willing to engage in risky behavior and drive like men, are among the reasons for the increase, says the Auto Club.

On a national level, there were 12,998 deaths from drunk driving overall in 2007, a decline of 3.7% from a year earlier, according to federal statistics. The number of female drivers involved in drunk-driving fatal crashes peaked in 2004 and has declined since at the national level. Over the past decade, about three times as many male drivers were killed in drunk-driving crashes than female drivers.

Of course, all those numbers really do is point to the fact that an awful lot of people are still being killed by drunk drivers each year. That's the reason the Auto Club is one of many participants today at the Orange County Drinking and Driving Community Forum, which also involves law enforcement and healthcare professionals. The goal is to find a way to bring those numbers down.

The Auto Club's data were based on an analysis of California Highway Patrol data.