US study warns that drunk driving endangers children image

According to a study made by Northwestern University, two thirds of children killed in drunk driving accidents were actually in the car with the intoxicated person.

The study, headed by Dr. Kyran Quinlan, of Northwestern University and conducted with the help of researchers from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, finds out that basic statistics are the same from three decades ago – although the total number of deaths related to drunk driving has declined in recent years.

“Despite what’s commonly thought, it’s not a family in one car and a drunk driver in another,” said Dr. Quinlan. Also, “about 70 % of the time the drunk driver survived the crash.”

Ironically and unfortunately, with the statistics revealing that many times the crashes were survivable, the study also reveals that almost two out of three of the children killed didn’t have their seat belts on.

For children under the age of 15%, car crashes are among the leading causes of death – in 2010 alone 1,210 fatalities occurred and, according to government tracking data one in five was due to drunk driving. The researchers used the federal FARS – Fatality Analysis Reporting System – to search for crashes in between 2001 and 2010 – with 2,344 such fatalities, in which 65% of the children were in the car with the intoxicated person.