2010 DUI Report

As part of their commitment to promoting alcohol safety and awareness, McIntyre Law, P.C., compiled a study by collecting and examining drunk driving statistics provided by the National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office (OHSO), and the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS). Unfortunately, the data showed that fatalities in drunk driving accidents increased statewide since last year. Although fatalities dropped dramatically from 2008 to 2009, seven out of ten of Oklahoma’s most populated counties saw an increase in fatalities between 2009 and 2010. It’s disturbing to note that Oklahoma and Tulsa counties had the highest numbers of drunk driving fatalities, a statistic that hasn’t changed for more than five years. Also, Cleveland County, the third largest county by population, had 233 alcohol-related crashes in 2010. Collectively, Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Cleveland Counties account for 41% of Oklahoma drunk driving accidents.

Across the state of Oklahoma, drunk driving statistics show that alcohol-related accidents have been on the rise since 2006. It’s our hope that by providing this information, we can motivate the state to work toward raising public awareness about the pain and suffering caused by drunk driving.

Alcohol-Related Fatalities in Oklahoma, 2006 – 2010

In 2010, Oklahoma saw 245 drunk driving fatalities, an increase of 17.2% over last year. Deaths weren’t restricted to vehicle drivers and passengers, though. Over the course of a year, 27 pedestrians and 1 bicyclist were also killed in drunk driving accidents. In addition, drunk driving statistics show that 633 people were permanently incapacitated as a result of alcohol-related accidents during the same period. Moreover, alcohol-related deaths have increased by 56% since 2006, a rather alarming rate.

Conversely drunk driving accidents have decreased by nearly 1,000 over the last five years, and the number of alcohol-related injuries has also gone down by approximately the same number.

Fatalities in alcohol-related accidents increased by 17.2%

Alcohol-Related Crashes, Injuries and Fatalities, 2006 – 2010

2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Crashes 5,442 4,980 5,201 4,972 4,614
Injuries 4,223 3,442 3,612 3,452 3,248
Fatalities 157 229 266 209 245

Oklahoma Alcohol-Related Fatalities by Lighting, 2010

40% of alcohol-related crashes occur on dark unlit roads
Many rural roads do not have street lights. In 2010, 40% of drunk driving accidents occurred in rural areas with either poor lighting, or no lighting at all.

Males vs. Females in Alcohol-Related Crashes, 2010

Males are twice as likely to be drivers in alcohol-related crashes than females
Males continue to account for the largest percentage of drivers and deaths in drunk driving accidents.

Fatalities in Alcohol-Related Crashes by County, 2006 – 2010

Oklahoma & Tulsa counties had the highest number of fatalities in the last 5 years

Counties with the Most Fatalities, 2006 – 2010

County Total Fatalities
Oklahoma County 117
Tulsa County 110
Cleveland County 41
Caddo County 30
Okmulgee County 28
Comanche County 28
Canadian County 28
Osage County 28
Wagoner County 27
Creek County 26

Counties with the Fewest Fatalities, 2006 – 2010

County Total Fatalities
Harmon County 0
Harper County 1
Major County 1
Dewey County 2
Craig County 2

For the fifth year in a row, Oklahoma County had the highest number of drunk driving fatalities over a five-year period with 117 deaths, an increase of 10% over the previous five-year period. During the period between 2006 and 2010, last year was the deadliest with 30 alcohol-related traffic deaths. Coming in at second once again is Tulsa County, which has seen 110 deaths resulting from drunk driving accidents since 2006. Harmon County has had no alcohol-related fatalities since 2006, making it the least deadly county as far as Oklahoma drunk driving numbers.

Fatalities in Alcohol-Related Crashes by Population, 2006 – 2010

Roger Mills County had the highest fatality rate in 2010

Counties with the Highest Fatality Rate, 2006 – 2010

County Fatalities per 100,00 People Actual Fatalities Population*
Roger Mills County 174.62 6 3,436
Caddo County 99.50 30 30,150
Pushmataha County 94.28 11 11,667
Beckham County 90.91 18 19,799
Haskell County 84.80 10 11,792
Greer County 82.49 5 6,061
Grant County 77.76 4 5,144
Johnston County 76.10 8 10,513
Blaine County 75.15 9 11,976
Ellis County 73.62 3 4,075

*Population is from 2000 census data.

Counties with the Lowest Fatality Rate, 2006 – 2010

County Fatalities per 100,000 People Actual Fatalities Population*
Harmon County 0 0 3,283
Texas County 9.95 2 20,107
Garfield County 12.11 7 57,813
Major County 13.25 1 7,545
Craig County 13.38 2 14,950
Jackson County 14.07 4 28,439
Kingfisher County 14.36 2 13,926
Oklahoma County 17.72 117 660,448
Tulsa County 19.53 110 563,299
Kiowa County 19.56 2 10,227

*Population is from 2000 census data.

As is to be expected, population varies from county to county in Oklahoma, so drunk driving statistics will also vary based on those numbers. This is an important point to remember when viewing these statistics. For example, Kiowa County had twice the number of drunk driving fatalities per capita as Texas County did from 2006 to 2010, which sounds like an alarming disparity. The reality is, both counties only had two alcohol-related traffic deaths each. Of the three largest counties in the state, Cleveland County was the only one to see a decrease in drunk driving fatalities from 2009 to 2010, with six deaths down from ten. For five years running, Harmon County has not had a single alcohol-related traffic death.

Increases and Decreases in Alcohol-Related Fatalities by County, 2009 – 2010

Love County had the largest decrease in alcohol-related fatalities

Counties with the Greatest Increase in Fatalities, 2009 – 2010

County 2009 Fatalities 2010 Fatalities Population Change in Fatalities per 100,000 People
Roger Mills County 0 2 3,436 58.21
Pushmataha County 1 4 11,667 25.71
Ellis County 0 1 4,075 24.54
McClain County 0 6 27,740 21.63
Sequoyah County 0 8 38,972 20.53
Grant County 1 2 5,144 19.44

Counties with the Greatest Decrease in Fatalities, 2009 – 2010

County 2009 Fatalities 2010 Fatalities Population Change in Fatalities per 100,000 People
Love County 2 0 8,831 -22.65
Woods County 2 0 9,089 -22.00
Dewey County 1 0 4,743 -21.08
Blaine County 2 0 11,976 -16.70
Coal County 2 1 6,031 -16.58
Alfalfa County 1 0 6,105 -16.38

Not only was Roger Mills County the county with the highest drunk driving fatality rate over the last five years, it also saw the greatest increase in fatalities per 100,000 people from 2009 to 2010, going up from zero to two. Even more disturbing, Sequoyah County real fatalities increased from none in 2009 to eight last year.

Conversely, although Love County only had two fewer drunk driving fatalities than last year, it is the greatest drop when counted per 100,000 people, going from two to zero. Meanwhile, Creek County fatalities decreased from seven to one, and it was one of the ten most populated counties to record a drop in alcohol-related traffic deaths. Of course, any drop in fatalities is good.

At McIntyre Law, we make it part of our mission to help protect the rights of car accident victims across Oklahoma. We hope these drunk driving statistics help demonstrate how pervasive the problem is in the state. If you or a loved one has because of a drunk driving accident, and you need to find a personal injury lawyer, please contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation.

If you would like to help increase awareness of Oklahoma drunk driving, please join the conversation by contacting the local Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) chapter nearest you:

  • Oklahoma MADD Chapter
    Phone: 405-748-3122
    Email: ok.state@madd.org
    Web: https://www.madd.org/oklahoma/
  • Oklahoma SADD Chapter
    PO Box 53277
    Oklahoma City, OK 73152
    Phone: 405-522-2700
    Email: tiffani.henry@odmhsas.org