Drunk driving continues to be a major issue in every state across the nation, including Michigan, and the offenders are usually men.
However, the results of a study that was presented at a traffic safety conference in East Lansing indicate the reasons behind an increase in the number of women arrested for driving under the influence.
About the study
Statistics compiled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation show that the number of women arrested for DUI between 2003 and 2012 rose from 174,000 to 211,000, a 21 percent increase. A research scientist with the Traffic Injury Research Foundation in Ontario, Canada, conducted a random study of these arrests in certain counties in California, Missouri, New York and Michigan. Erin Holmes presented the results of her study at the Michigan Traffic Safety Summit in East Lansing.
More women working
The study indicated that one reason for an uptick in female DUI arrests is that more women are now in the workforce and are driving longer distances. Many are also driving at night, sometimes heading home after relaxing over drinks with friends, and law enforcement is more likely to be on the lookout for drunk drivers after dark.
Women might turn to alcohol when they are stressed over work, when they are having relationship problems or going through a divorce. Erin Holmes' study revealed that an argument or breakup in a romantic relationship preceded many arrests for driving under the influence.
Despite the increase in arrests for women charged with DUI in Michigan, the number of drunk driving accidents have gone down for both men and women. A criminal defense attorney will tell you that people of all ages, from all walks of life, are susceptible to thinking it is OK to drive after having a few drinks. However, Michigan laws are strict, and people charged with DUI can benefit when they are represented by an experienced DUI defense lawyer.