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Drunk Driving Deaths
Increase in the U.S.


September 1996

For the first time in a decade, drunk driving deaths in the United States increased, according to a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The annual report, made public on July 2, said alcohol-related traffic accidents killed 17,274 people in 1995, a 4% increase from 1994. "This increase should set off an alarm across our country that there is much more to be done ... to stop drinking and driving," said Katherine Prescott, president of Mothers Against Drunk Drivers. However, the figure is 28% lower than the 24,045 deaths in 1986. Since 1986, the number of drunk driving deaths has declined each year. Alcohol-related deaths also made up a slightly higher percentage of the total number of highway deaths in 1995 -- 41%, compared with 40.8% in 1994. The 1986 figure was 52.2% of total highway deaths (Associated Press, "U.S. Sees a Rise in Drunk Driving Deaths," New York Times, July 3, 1996, p. A17; Associated Press, "U.S. records an increase in drunken driving deaths," Philadelphia Inquirer, July 3, 1996, p. A13).

For more information, contact: Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) - 511 E. John Carpenter Freeway, Suite 700, Irving, Texas 75062-8187, Tel: (214) 744-MADD, Fax: (214) 869-2206/2207 or The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration - 400 7th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20590, Tel: (202) 366-9550, Fax: (202) 493-2833.