Spike in drunk driving expected Friday through Monday
September 1, 2016, DENVER—A new analysis of the drinking behavior of drunk drivers during Labor Day shows that drinking more than doubles on Saturday of the holiday weekend compared to the average the rest of the year.
Alcohol Monitoring Systems (AMS) examined more than 2 billion alcohol readings from 500,000 drunk drivers who were sentenced to abstinence and monitored for alcohol use every 30 minutes, 24/7, as a condition of their sentence. The data shows that the Saturday increase is expected to continue through Labor Day itself, when violations by alcohol offenders may be more than 80 percent higher than usual.
The analysis of this high-risk group comes on the heels of new figures released this week by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) showing that alcohol-related traffic fatalities increased 3.2 percent in 2015 over the previous year. According to NHTSA, in 2014 alcohol was a factor in nearly half of all traffic fatalities during Labor Day weekend.
The majority of individuals monitored for drinking by AMS are considered to be high-risk, repeat DUI offenders. Because the testing protocol is automated and occurs every 30 minutes, it allows social researchers to look at patterns and trends in the behaviors of alcohol offenders.
“The defendants we monitor have been court-ordered not to drink. They know they’ll get caught and they know there will be consequences, including jail. So just imagine the potential problem among people who aren’t being monitored,” says Kathleen Brown, industry analyst and director of Marketing and Public Relations for Denver-based AMS. “When people drink too much, they make bad choices, and injuries and fatalities skyrocket,” says Brown.
AMS provides holiday-related data to drive awareness about the dangers of binge drinking and drunk driving. This year, AMS is also partnering with the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility (FAAR) and other industry leaders for FAAR’s #EndImpairedDriving Campaign.
About Alcohol Monitoring Systems, Inc. (AMS)
Established in 1997, Alcohol Monitoring Systems, Inc. (AMS) is the world’s leading provider of alcohol testing technologies for the criminal justice industry. The company’s flagship Continuous Alcohol Monitoring (CAM) technology, launched in 2003, revolutionized the way courts, agencies and treatment providers monitor and manage alcohol-involved offenders. In 2013 the company launched the SCRAM Systems suite of electronic monitoring technologies, which includes SCRAM Remote Breath®, SCRAM GPS®, and SCRAM House Arrest®. AMS employs 240 people worldwide and is a privately-held company headquartered in Littleton, Colorado.