From oil production to higher education mixed in with friendliness, Texas ranks at the top in the nation. However, another designation is nothing to brag about. The Lone Star State is statistically the fifth worst state for drunk driving, based on data collected from 2020.
Drunk driving remains a problem
A study conducted by Zutobi, a resource for online driver education, gave Texas a “severity score” of 64.4 percent. Factors that determined the score include:
- The total number of all DUI deaths
- DUI deaths per 100,000 drivers
- Drunk driving arrests for every 100,000 motor vehicle operators
- DUI fatalities factoring in all fatal road accidents
Texas also saw a rise of 12.2 percent in driving while intoxicated deaths. Even more alarming is that the state is first in the lowest arrest rates for drunk drivers out of the entire top five. States ranking higher include Wyoming, Montana, and North and South Dakota.
States ranking in the more coveted “last place” category include New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Massachusetts, and Hawaii.
National statistics revealed that men are four times more like to cause a fatal DUI accident compared to women. Additionally, thirty percent of traffic-related deaths involved drunk driving, an increase of nearly 15 percent from the previous year (2019). The National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism cited the pandemic-driven increase in alcohol purchases playing a role in that statistic.
Strict Lone Star State laws and consequences
Texas is well known as one of the states with harsh DUI penalties, including three other laws involving impaired driving. Those include ignition interlock devices, open containers, and child endangerment.
The flashing lights from a police car are the first indication of potential trouble. However, drunk driving tests that lead to an arrest do not mean that a conviction is automatic. A skilled and experienced DUI attorney with comprehensive knowledge of Texas law can be your best advocate in protecting your rights.