The deadliest times for drunk driving

On Behalf of | Sep 23, 2022 | Auto Accidents

Traffic fatalities rose sharply over the past two years. This trend is blamed mostly upon risky behavior, such as drunk driving, according to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. On average, someone is killed in a drunk driving accident in this country every 45 minutes.

Drunk driving fatalities rose

Drunk driving deaths in car and truck and other traffic accidents rose by 14% from 2019 to 2020. There were 10,598 fatal traffic accidents involving alcohol in 2020 which caused 11,654 fatalities including almost 1,000 pedestrians.

National deadly hour

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration determined that these traffic deaths occurred at specific three-hour time periods during the day. According to preliminary NHTSA data, the largest proportionate of drunk driving deaths, 23%, occurred from 9:00 p.m. to 11:59 p.m. The second largest number, approximately 20%, took place from 6:00 p.m. to 8:59 p.m. Only 3% of drunk driving deaths occurred between 9:00 a.m. and 11:59 a.m.

Drunk driving accidents in this data involved a driver with a blood alcohol content of at least 0.08 percent which exceeds the legal limit for driving in this country. These included single, multi-vehicle accidents involving the deaths of drivers, other vehicle occupants, motorcyclists, and pedestrians.


In 2020, Louisiana suffered 762 fatal traffic accidents. Alcohol played a role in 27.4% or 209 of these accidents. This is the 19th lowest among all the states.

The time between 9:00 p.m. to 11:59 p.m. is the time of day having the highest number of deadly alcohol-related accidents. During this time, there were 61 fatal drunk driving accidents, or 29.2% of all fatal accidents involving alcohol.

Louisiana and most states followed the national pattern on when the accidents occurred. However, several states fell outside this trend and most of their fatal drunk driving accidents took place in the mid-afternoon or early morning.

Attorneys can assist victims of drunk driving and their families seek compensation for the serious losses from the crashes. They can help them file a timely personal injury lawsuit.