While overall DUI deaths are down over the past seven years, recent data indicates that there is still a DUI death every 50 minutes. This means that 29 people die on average in a DUI-related accident each day. In California, some cities have larger DUI problems than others. In fact, eight of the cities featured in a report about the top 25 cities for DUI are in California. Los Angeles is one of the main offenders for having a higher number of DUIs than the average, with a rate that is 8% higher than the national average. 1.7% of Los Angeles drivers have a DUI on their record.
KHTS reports that the decline in DUI rates in California may be related to the COVID-19 pandemic and should probably not be considered as a part of the overall trend.
At the moment, DUI arrests and convictions appear to be on a downward trend in California. However, analyzing these statistics and how they figure into the current situation is a little more difficult. It is currently hard to determine how and if statistics should be adjusted accordingly to take the pandemic and economic shutdown into consideration.
However, when and where rising trends are positively identified, it is important that the state and local communities take action where they can in order to aid in the prevention of DUIs.
When it comes to penalties, jail time and fines and fees are certainly a deterrent. So are the skyrocketing insurance premiums for a driver convicted of DUI. However, California remains relatively average on this front. State and local governments have been placing a lot of effort into approaching DUI arrests and convictions in a balanced way.
Bearing all of this in mind, it is hard to draw any conclusions as to whether DUI rates are declining overall or the approaches that California should take to prevent DUIs. Assessing trends during the pandemic may not be the best approach. Instead, a better look should be taken once the pandemic is over, as a more objective conclusion is possible.