Minnesota DWI Deaths See Drop in Numbers

Minnesota is in the midst of a DWI crackdown and it is ongoing as the state continues to see progress made in the war against drunk driving.

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety says that 2012 saw 104 drivers killed due to drunk driving and 28,418 were arrested. This is down from 11 deaths in 2011 and that was approximately 100 fewer deaths compared to a decade ago. Still, the grand total of deaths over the last five years is over 500.

So what does the Minnesota Department of Public Safety say the reason is for the reduced numbers?

Law enforcement says that they are able to get information out to people much easier than they used to. Much of this has to do with social media.

When the Minnesota State Patrol initiates a crackdown, they have been live tweeting the names of those arrested for drunk driving, giving others an incentive to not drink and drive. However, the names of those tweeted are simply alleged drunk drivers. They are not determined to be innocent or guilty until such is found by the court or they plead guilty if they are guilty.

Nonetheless, law enforcement has prided themselves in the fact that they have been able to tell people what drinking and driving entails, why it is a dangerous activity, and why individuals need to make better decisions.

While the number of deaths is down, law enforcement is going to continue to educate so they can save the lives of more drivers.

In the meantime, the DWI crackdown continues through Labor Day. In the first two weekends, there were approximately 755 individuals arrested for suspected drunk driving in Minnesota.

Here are some statistics released by the Department of Public Safety’s office regarding DWIs in 2012:

  • 395 individuals died in traffic crashes in Minnesota with 104 of those being the result of drunk driving.
  • 75 percent of the 104 occurred outside the Twin Cities metro area.
  • 2,644 people suffered injuries in crashes involving drunk driving
  • 28,418 people were arrested for DWI, which averaged to 78 per day. This is compared to 29,257 arrests in 2011 and 29,918 in 2010.
  • 40 percent of the violators were repeat offenders
  • Men accounted for 73 percent of the DWI arrests
  • Motorists 20-29 years of age accounted for 42 percent of the arrests
  • One in 16 arrests were drivers under 21 years of age
  • One in seven drivers in Minnesota has a DWI on their record and one in 16 has more than one
  • The average blood alcohol concentration among first-time offenders was .148 with .164 being the average for repeat offenders.