Drunk driving has many far-reaching effects that affect our community. Homicide is a devastating effect that most people associate with drunk driving. In 2006, an estimated 17,602 people died in alcohol-related traffic crashes - an average of 1 every 30 minutes. These deaths constitute 41% of the 42,642 total traffic fatalities. Of these, an estimated 13,470 involved a driver with an illegal BAC (.08 or greater). Drunk driving greatly affects our community as well. In 2006, there were 1,238 total traffic related deaths in Ohio, 39% of which were alcohol-related deaths (488 total alcohol-related deaths). (Source-National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2007 and MADD website statistics for 2006.) What many people don’t always consider is the many physical, emotional, and financial effects of non-fatal drunk driving crashes in our community. Surviving victims of drunk driving crashes cope with serious physical and closed-head injuries, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and sometimes, insurmountable financial devastation. They can often be overlooked in the criminal justice system.
Drunk Driving With a Child
Drunk driving with a child in the vehicle is another widely overlooked crime. Endangering Children (Ohio Revised Code 2919.22) makes it a crime to operate a motor vehicle with 1 or more children in the car while under the influence of alcohol or a drug of abuse. Child victims of this crime need and deserve a voice in the criminal justice system.
The Victim Assistance Program provides support and advocacy to drunk driving crash victims and endangering children victims and strongly encourages crime victims to access the many services offered by MADD.