2013 DUI Report

Driving under the influence (DUI) is a problem everywhere, and it’s not a new concern. While DUI continues to cause injuries and fatalities on Oklahoma roads and elsewhere, the good news is that the number of fatalities decreased more than 27% in 2013 from where it had been in the years prior. As long as there are any DUI injuries or fatalities in Oklahoma, it’s too many. The team at McIntyre Law, P.C. has dedicated ourselves to the safety and security of the community here in Oklahoma, so it’s our priority to bring you the latest statistics on issues that concern you and your loved ones on a day to day basis. That’s why, for the sixth year in a row, we’re sharing with you our research into the trends and facts behind Oklahoma DUI. Data are from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Oklahoma Highway Safety Office (OHSO) and the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS).

Oklahoma Alcohol-related Fatalities

In the chart above, you can see that 2013 shows strong improvement over any year since 2006 with respect to the number of fatalities in alcohol-related accidents. Aside from a slight dip in 2009, the numbers have remained high each year.

However, we should look at not only how many fatalities there were, but also who is most likely to be causing these accidents so that we can try to prevent them. Remaining fairly constant with last year, we see that females make up only about a quarter of drivers in alcohol-related crashes, while three-quarters of these drivers are male. The percentage is similar in looking at driver fatalities in alcohol-related crashes: 81% male and 19% female.

2013 Gender Trends in Alcohol-Related Crashes

It’s also interesting to note that more alcohol-related crashes happen on Saturdays and Sundays than any other days of the week. Our studies show that this has been the pattern for at least the past six years.

Alcohol-related fatalities by day of the week

Driving conditions are also a significant factor when it comes to alcohol-related crashes. Consistent with last year’s report, the largest number of alcohol-related crashes in 2013 occurred in dark (unlit) areas, with the numbers of crashes in daylight or dark-lit areas being close to equal. We can ascertain, then, that anything that complicates driving under normal circumstances (like poorly lit roads) will be an aggravating factor for someone who is driving under the influence of alcohol or another substance.

Oklahoma Alcohol-Related Crashes, Injuries and Fatalities, 2006-2013

2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013
Crashes 5,442 4,980 5,201 4,972 4,614 4,411 4,291 3,825
Injuries 4,223 3,442 3,612 3,452 3,248 3,156 3,153 2,696
Fatalities 157 229 266 209 245 244 261 189

Though there have been ups and downs in the figures between 2006 and 2013, there is some positive news in the statistics: The number of crashes is down 42% and the number of injuries down 57%. It doesn’t diminish the fact that the number of fatalities is up 17%, but fewer crashes is definitely a good thing, especially with the dramatic drop in fatalities from 2012 to 2013.

County-by-County Trends, 2006-2013

County by country trends 2013

Counties with the Most Fatalities, 2006-2013

County Total Fatalities
Tulsa County 189
Oklahoma County 187
Cleveland County 58
Comanche County 49
Canadian County 45
Creek County 41
Caddo County 41
Delaware County 41
Wagoner County 40

In 2013, Tulsa and Oklahoma counties had the most DUI fatalities, by far. While the other counties either had none or numbers in the single-digits, Tulsa and Oklahoma counties each had more than 20 fatalities.

Counties with the Least Fatalities, 2006-2013

County Total Fatalities
Harmon County 0
Cimmaron County 2
Harper County 2
Cotton County 3
Tillman County 3
Jefferson County 3

Fatalities in Alcohol-Related Crashes by Population, 2006-2013

Fatalities in Alcohol-Related Crashes by Population 2013

Counties with the Highest Fatality Rate, 2006-2013

County Actual Fatalities Population* Fatalities Per 100,000 People
Roger Mills County 10 3,702 270.12
Grant County 7 4,585 152.67
Pushmataha County 17 11,487 148.10
Greer County 9 6,125 146.93
Blaine County 14 9,780 143.14
Caddo County 41 29,537 138.80
Ellis County 5 4,051 123.42
Dewey County 6 4,867 123.27
Haskell County 15 12,810 117.09
Johnston County 12 11,139 107.72

*Population from 2011 Census Data

Counties with the Lowest Fatality Rate, 2006-2013

County Actual Fatalities Population* Fatalities Per 100,000 People
Harmon County 0 2,919 0.00
Cleveland County 58 261,281 22.19
Jackson County 6 26,447 22.68
Texas County 5 21,312 23.46
Oklahoma County 187 732,371 25.53
Garfield County 17 60,670 28.02
Tulsa County 189 610,599 30.95
Adair County 8 22,612 35..37
Payne County 28 77,988 35.90
Tillman County 3 8,061 37.21

Increases and Decreases in Alcohol-Related Fatalities by County, 2011-2012

Oklahoma change in fatalities per capita 06-13

Counties with the Greatest Increase in Fatalities, 2011-2013

County 2012 2013 Population* Change in Fatalities Per 100,000 People
Johnston County County 0 3 11,139 26.93
Ellis County 0 1 4,051 24.68
Greer County 1 2 6,125 16.32
Pontotoc County 1 7 37,799 15.87
Craig County 2 4 15,073 13.26

The number of fatalities per capita increased the most dramatically in Johnston, Ellis, Greer, Pontotoc and Craig counties.

Counties with the Greatest Decrease in Fatalities, 2011-2013

County 2012 2013 Population* Change in Fatalities Per 100,000 People
Roger Mills County 3 1 3,702 -54.02
Grant County 2 0 4,585 -43.62
Beaver County 2 0 5,624 -35.56
Harper County 0 2 3,695 -27.06
Dewey County 1 0 4,867 -20.54

On the flip side, the greatest decrease in per capita fatalities from alcohol-related crashes were Roger Mills, Grant, Beaver, Harper and Dewey counties.

Ultimately, DUI and alcohol-related crashes remain a significant problem in Oklahoma. It will continue to be a problem as long as people fail to heed warnings from law enforcement, public service announcements and their loved ones about drinking and driving. Oklahoma is already taking steps to prevent repeat DUI offenders, but the problem must be solved by each driver’s taking personal responsibility. Particularly if you’re a parent of teenagers, it’s crucial that you impress upon them not just the risks of driving under the influence, but also distracted driving, which is a huge contributor to teen road fatalities. Teach your kids about responsible driving, but also about being a responsible passenger. Teens are often willing to take risks that more experienced adult drivers would not, and they might not understand as well the way that alcohol or other substances affect their bodies and their driving skills.

Of course, whether it’s a holiday, other special occasion, or any time, there are precautions you can take to minimize the risk of getting behind the wheel while under the influence, and to minimize the likelihood that a guest in your home would do so.

At McIntyre Law, it’s our mission to improve safety and protect the rights of Oklahoma car accident victims. We share these statistics in order to help raise awareness of this very important issue. If you or a loved one has been injured because of a drunk driving accident and you need the help of 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