Repeat and high-risk DUI offenders are the leading culprits behind drunk driving fatalities
Repeat DUI offenders and drivers with blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels of at least 0.15 percent are the leading culprits, according to the Governors Highway Safety Administration (GHSA).
What can be done to prevent high-risk DUI crashes?
In its latest report — High-Risk Impaired Drivers: Combating a Critical Threat — the GHSA addresses the need for individualized treatment for those who are at a high risk of impaired driving.
The report focused on these key criterion:
- Drivers who have a history of DUI convictions and/or alcohol-related crashes
- Those who drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of 0.15 percent or higher
- Drivers who mix alcohol and drugs
- Those who have an uncontrollable impulse to drive impaired
For these individuals, driving impaired is not an isolated incident. They're not the type to learn from their mistakes after facing the consequences of a DUI conviction. The Cambridge Health Alliance at Harvard Medical School attributes high-risk impaired driving to substance use disorders and mental health disorders.
High-risk DUI offenders sometimes don't recognize the seriousness of their actions. In one recent incident in Omaha, a woman was stopped by police and arrested for drunk driving and speeding. A breath test revealed a staggering BAC of 0.25 percent, which is three times the legal limit. At the time of her arrest, the woman humorously told the police, "Don't worry, I'm a professional drinker." Her statement became an immediate hit on social media. Luckily, nobody was injured by her actions.
Is treatment effective?
In many cases, those who get caught driving drunk are able to successfully fight the charges. High-risk DUI offenders, however, could relapse. That's even after paying fines, serving jail sentences, and installing an ignition interlock device for a certain period of time.
In order to remedy this problem, the GHSA has teamed up with Responsibility.org. The groups propose an individualized treatment method that could help end the pattern of impaired driving in high-risk individuals.
Darrin Grondel, Chair of GHSA, explains:
“The aim of this new report is to encourage states and their partners to take a more holistic approach to the problem by identifying and treating the cause of the offender’s behavior to reduce recidivism and promote long-term behavior change.”
Last year, Nebraska ranked the 8th most dangerous state for drunk driving in a study conducted by insurance referral site Insurify. Roughly 3.34 percent of drivers across the state reportedly have a history of DUI offenses. What's worse, more than 35 percent of statewide traffic fatalities involve alcohol impairment.
The Omaha car accident attorneys at Ausman Law Firm P.C., L.L.O. have seen lives turned upside down due to the actions of drunk drivers. That's why we have dedicated ourselves to helping crash victims and their families pursue justice. If you or a loved one was hurt in a crash, contact us online and schedule your free consultation with our experienced legal team.