We hear all the time about the correlation between holidays and drunk or drugged driving. Traditionally, there is an uptick in the number of crashes, highway fatalities and DUI arrests during the various holidays. But some holidays are more dangerous than others.
The Most Dangerous Dates to be on the Road
Here’s the breakdown on which days are the most dangerous on U.S. highways. July 4 is the deadliest day of all to be on the road. This is followed by September 2 and August 13. Next are July 15 and May 20, followed by November 11. Surprisingly, New Year’s Eve comes in only at number 7. But however you look at the statistics, it is apparent that Memorial Day weekend has more than its fair share of drunk drivers.
Memorial Day in Arizona
This year there were more than 550 DUI arrests statewide during the Memorial Day weekend. This represents an increase of 10% over last year. We don’t suppose you can glean any significant trends by looking at just a couple of years of arrests during a single holiday weekend. We say this in part because statistics over just a short time may simply be idiosyncratic. In addition, the increased level of DUI patrols and checkpoints may themselves lead to a change in the number of arrests.
Having said that, we should point out some disturbing aspects of the reports for Memorial Day weekend 2017:
- The average BAC (blood alcohol level) of those arrested was (allegedly) 0.136. That may not seem too worrisome, but if the numbers are accurate, it means that the average driver arrested had a BAC that is 70% higher than the legal limit of 0.08.
- More than 20% of those arrested have been charged with extreme DUI, meaning that they stand accused of having a BAC in excess of 0.15.
- About 3% of the DUI arrests involved drivers under the age of 21.
- There were over 100 DUI drug arrests.
This year, more than 3,000 Arizona police officers and deputies were involved in DUI enforcement over the Memorial Day weekend. You can expect similar activity during holiday times going forward, beginning, of course, with July 4.
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Phoenix, AZ 85004