Halloween is almost upon us, and in the spirit of the season, we’d like to relate a few facts that are more than a little scary.
We have MADD. We have Drive Clear. We have catchy slogans (“Friends Don't Let Friends Drive Drunk”) and ad campaigns that were so successful nearly everyone has seen or at least heard about them. We even have affordable devices like breathalyzers that help us keep aware of how alcohol affects us. Yet we still have countless drunk drivers on the roads. Despite the sobering headlines and untold heartache, people still make terrible decisions and get behind the wheel after drinking too much.
This is startling, not only because of the avalanche of evidence that is at this point commonplace, but also because preventing these tragedies is as simple as raising awareness of one's alcohol intake. Perhaps no instrument does this as quickly and effectively as a BACtrack Breathalyzer. By using one, an untold number of lives could be saved.
Here are a few very alarming facts about drunk driving1. Let’s keep these in mind during Halloween, which according to the BACtrack Consumption Report, continues to be a deadly time of year.
- Car crashes are the number one killer of people in their teens. To put that in a more stark light, one third of all auto fatalities involving teens are alcohol-related.
- Eight teens die every day in DUI crashes. Inexperience and youthfulness leads to bad decision making.
- Teen fatalities make up one-fifth of all alcohol-related crashes, though licensed teens make up only about 6% of the overall licensed population.
- Alcohol is involved in about 40% of all fatal car crashes.
- Alcohol is the number one choice of drug over all other drugs.
- Males are almost twice as likely as females to drive under the influence of alcohol.
- The highest average BAC in a specific hour window is 4 a.m. - 5 a.m. on Saturdays, where BACtrack Smartphone Breathalyzer users average 0.113%. The lowest is Tuesday 9 am - 10 am at 0.018%.
- Among auto crashes occurring at night, 50% of drivers killed had blood alcohol content (BAC) levels over the legal limit (0.08%) compared with 15% of drivers killed during other hours.
Amidst the gloom, a silver lining: drunk driving is 100% preventable. As a result of coordinated efforts by anti-drunk driving organizations, businesses, and government agencies, public awareness of the dire consequences of drunk driving has increased while alcohol-related crashes have steadily decreased. Teen drinking and driving is also on the decline.
There is never a reason to get behind the wheel if you are drunk. Use a BACtrack Breathalyzer and stay informed of your BAC. If you do get into a bad situation, call a friend, call a taxi, or spend the night somewhere safe. Whatever you have to do – however inconvenient – is way better than doing something you’ll regret for the rest of your life.