DWI Statistics by Substance
Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a serious offense that can have serious consequences. It is important to understand that you can face DWI charges if you are accused of driving while under the influence of several different types of substances, not just alcohol.
According to New Jersey law, driving while intoxicated charge can result from operating “a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, narcotic, hallucinogenic or habit-producing drug.” How often do people in New Jersey face DWI charges for different types of substances, and how frequently are drivers stopped for drunk driving versus drugged driving? The following information can help clarify DWI statistics by substance.
Drunk Driving and DWIs in New Jersey
According to the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some key statistics concerning alcohol-impaired driving in the state include:
- Alcohol-impaired accidents, which frequently result in fatal injuries, account for nearly 30% of all deadly motor vehicle collisions;
- About 20% of reported motor vehicle fatalities involve motorists who have BACs of 0.08 percent or more;
- About 27% of motorcyclists killed in alcohol-impaired collisions in New Jersey in 2017 had BACs of 0.08 or higher;
- Between 2003 and 2012, a total of 1,816 people were killed in drunk driving crashes in New Jersey.
Drugged Driving Statistics and DWIs
Drugged driving in New Jersey and across the country can take many different forms, and a person can face DWI charges for driving under the influence of a variety of controlled substances. A motorist can even face drugged driving DWI charges for operating a vehicle while using a habit-producing drug they have been prescribed.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the following are statistics concerning DWIs and drugged driving:
- Prescription medications that can be habit-producing can also result in drugged driving accidents, including opioids and benzodiazepines, given that they can result in “drowsiness, dizziness, and can impair cognitive functioning”;
- Approximately 12.6 million people drove under the influence of drugs in 2018 (compared to about 20.5 million people who drove under the influence of alcohol);
- Marijuana is the type of drug that is detected most often in drugged driving accidents and arrests; and
- Nearly 20% of drivers who were stopped or arrested for driving under the influence “tested positive for some type of opioid.”
Contact a DWI Defense Lawyer in New Jersey
If you have been arrested for a DWI in New Jersey, or if you need assistance defending against DWI charges in the state, it is critical to have an aggressive New Jersey DWI defense lawyer on your side who can assist you.
New Jersey takes DWI cases extremely seriously, and even a first offense can result in a fine of between $250-$400, up to 30 days in jail, installation of an ignition interlock, and thousands of dollars in surcharges and other costs. Penalties increase for subsequent offenses. As such, it is important to do everything you can to beat the DWI you are facing.
Contact our New Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyer at the Law Office of Matthew V. Portella for more information.