Probabilities Of a Fatal Car Accident | DUI & DWI
The Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs publishes peer-reviewed research studies and review articles with various topics involving alcohol and other illicit substances. In an article written by Eduardo Romano and his colleagues titled Drugs and Alcohol: Their Relative Crash Risk, the effects drugs and alcohol on the probability of being involved in a fatal car accident are compared. Two studies were conducted with the help of data from the U.S. Fatality Analysis Reporting System and the National Roadside Survey. One study compares the risks of alcohol to the risk of various other drugs. The second study separated marijuana from the drug category, and compares the risks of all three: alcohol, marijuana, and various other drugs.
What did the Researchers Find?
Around 58% of drivers that were involved in fatal accidents were driving under the influence of alcohol. Another 20% of drivers involved in traffic fatalities tested positive for other various drugs. Researchers also found statistically significant unadjusted Odds Ratios for both alcohol and drugs.
“The unadjusted Odds Ratio of a drugged driver being involved in a traffic fatality is 1.66 whereas the unadjusted Odds Ratio of a drunk driver being involved in a traffic fatality is 14.67. These are both statistically significant; however, the Odds Ratio for the drunk driver is nine times greater than that of the drugged driver. Interestingly, there was no significant increase in risk for drivers who had mixed drugs and alcohol as compared to drivers who tested positive for alcohol alone.”
In the second study of the review, researchers separated marijuana, and instead compared the results of alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs.There was no increased risk for a fatal accident in drivers who tested positive for marijuana compared to drivers who tested negative for alcohol and all drugs. Researchers emphasized the fact that this finding does not lead to the conclusion that it is safe to drive while intoxicated by marijuana. People may test positive for many days after intoxication, and it is unclear whether those individuals were actually intoxicated or not at the time of the accident.
Although there were some limitations to this study, it is not surprising that people are at a much higher risk of being involved in a fatal accident while DUI; the risk is nine times greater than the drugged drivers. It has been suggested that certain personality and psychological traits increase the likelihood of DUI; the need to be accepted, depression, and a high susceptibility to suggestion, just to name a few.
If you have been charged with DUI or any related charges, an experienced DUI attorney is essential. Kenneth Padowitz, P.A. handles a variety of misdemeanor and high-stakes felony DUI cases. Our Fort Lauderdale based law firm provides a strategic criminal defense to those charged with DUI. Contact our law office to schedule an appointment with our DUI lawyer for a free consultation.