The statistics are in, and women are being involved in more and more drunk driving car accidents and arrests. According to The Century Council, the problem of drunk driving has predominantly been viewed as a man’s issue, but the tables are turning.
Female drunk driving has become a growing concern since the late ’80s. Just 20 years ago, women accounted for less than 10 percent of the nation’s drunk driving arrests. Since then, the proportion has increased dramatically, up about 30 percent from 1997 to 2007. Officials are looking deep into the problem to try and find solutions and to help better prioritize female drunk drivers in the context of the overall drunk driving problem.
Our Boston drunk driving accident lawyers understand that, generally speaking, women are less likely to drink than men. On the other hand, self-report data indicated that female drinking and driving behavior is mixed. There have been a number of explanations provided for the increase in female drunk driving arrests. Some say that it’s because of a declining trend in male arrests — making the female arrests more noticeable. Others say that it’s because of the changes in legal policy and enforcement practices — that there’s now a greater likelihood that law enforcement will detect and arrest female drunk drivers. Some have even said that it’s because women are more likely to be affected by alcohol, even at lower blood-alcohol concetrations (BAC) and because of the physiological differences. Many studies indicate that women have less alcohol metabolizing enzyme in their stomachs, as well as having smaller volumes of distribution.
Did you know that the average age of a female drunk-driving offender is 31?
Characterizing the female drunk driver:
-They are likely to be single, divorced or separated.
-They are more likely to be living with a partner who has an alcohol problem.
-Significantly higher psychiatric co-morbidity relative to their male counterparts.
-Likely to experience diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression and anxiety.
-The use of drugs appears to be more prevalent among female drunk-driving offenders.
-Are the primary caretaker of children at the time of arrest.
-Are more likely to have experienced abuse.
-More likely to have mental and physical needs.
While there are definite differences between male and female drunk-driving offenders, the influence of each factor still remains unclear.
On the other hand, recidivism risks may be higher for young males than for women.
Regardless of who commits these crimes, male or female, the truth of the matter is that drunk-driving accidents caused close to 10,000 fatalities in 2011, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). These accidents accounted for about a third of all traffic accident fatalities recorded in the county for the year. An average of one alcohol-impaired-driving fatality occurred every 53 minutes in 2011. During this time, Massachusetts saw close to 150 fatalities from drunk driving.
If you someone you love has been involved in a drunk driving accident in Massachusetts, call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.
More Blog Entries:
NFL Recruits MADD to Focus on Drunk Driving, Boston Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Blog, September 10, 2013
Boston’s Drunk Driving Arrests on Sharp Decline, Boston Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Blog, September 3, 2013