Biggest safety threats: boozers, unlicensed drivers, studies say

| Thursday, February 27, 2003

Unlicensed and habitually drunken drivers are among the greatest safety threats on the nation’s highways, according to two recent studies released by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

The studies found habitual drunken drivers make up 40 percent of all the drinking and driving trips, while unlicensed drivers are almost five times more likely to be in fatal crashes than drivers with valid driver’s licenses.

Among other findings:

  •  Two-thirds of drivers with suspended licenses continue to drive.
  •  More than half of all drivers arrested for driving while intoxicated are repeat offenders.
  •  There is a less than 1 in 50 chance that a drunken driver will be arrested on any given drunken driving trip.

As Congress prepares to reauthorize a major transportation funding bill, AAA will push for continued federal support to reinvigorate state and local efforts to address drunken driving. On the state level, AAA will push for states to re-evaluate their laws, license regulations and assessment programs.

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