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California DUI Statistics

Posted by Richard Wagner | Oct 06, 2023

“There are 3 kinds of lies: Lies, damned lies, and statistics" – Mark Twain 

California DUI lawyer

The latest report by the California DUI Management Information System provides information and statistics on California DUI arrests, convictions, postconviction sanctions, driver license suspension/revocation actions, and on drivers in alcohol-or drug-involved crashes.  

DUI Summary Statistics

⇒ Alcohol-involved crash fatalities decreased by 2.8% in 2019, following a decrease of 5.6% in 2018.
⇒Drug-involved crash fatalities increased by 7.5% in 2019, after a decrease of 10.5% in 2018.
⇒Of the total number of crash fatalities in 2019, 31.8% were alcohol-involved, which is only marginally lower than the 32.1% in 2018. The percentage of drug-involved fatalities increased from the prior year's 19.5% to 21.4% in 2019.
⇒In 2019, 10.2% of total crash injuries were alcohol-involved; relatively unchanged from 10.0% reported for 2018.

DUI Arrests

⇒The DUI arrest rate per 100,000 licensed drivers decreased by 3.2% in 2019, following an increase of 2.6% in 2018.

⇒DUI arrests decreased by 2.6% in 2019, after increasing by 3.1% in 2018. After a one-year increase in 2018, DUI arrests in 2019 potentially resumed a declining trend that began in 2008

⇒ The median (midpoint) age of a DUI arrestee in 2019 was 31 years and almost three-quarters (72.4%) of arrestees were age 40 or younger. Less than one percent (0.4%) of all DUI arrestees were juveniles (under age 18) and 4.5% were drivers over age 60.

⇒Males comprised 77.2% of all 2019 DUI arrests, about the same as in 2018. The proportion of females among DUI arrests has risen from 10.6% in 1989 to 22.8% in 2019.

⇒ Based on data from the Department of Justice (DOJ), Hispanic drivers (51.6%) were the largest racial/ethnic group among 2019 DUI arrestees, as has been the case each year for over a decade. Hispanic individuals continued to be arrested at a rate substantially higher than their estimated percentage of California's adult population (36.7% in 2019).

DUI Convictions

⇒71.1% of 2018 DUI arrests resulted in convictions for DUI offenses.

⇒6.0% of DUI convictions among those arrested in 2018 were driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) convictions. This represents a slight increase from 5.7% among DUI offenders arrested in 2017, which was itself marginally higher than the 5.5% among DUI offenders arrested in 2016.

⇒Among convicted DUI offenders arrested in 2018, 72.5% were first offenders and 27.5% were repeat offenders (one or more prior convictions within the previous 10 years), relatively unchanged from 2017. The proportion of repeat offenders has decreased considerably since 1989, when it stood at 37%, even though prior DUI convictions are currently retained on record, and thus counted, longer than in the past (10 years compared to 7 years in 1989).

⇒The median blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of a convicted DUI offender, as reported by law enforcement on Administrative Per Se (APS) forms, was 0.16% in 2018, which is double the California illegal per se BAC limit of 0.08%. Read More About blood alcohol concentration BAC

⇒In 2018, 18.9% of DUI arrest cases did not show any corresponding conviction on Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) records, higher than the value in 2017 (17.6%). This percentage has seen a considerable increase over the course of 8 years (it was 15.5% in 2010).

⇒Among first DUI offenders arrested in 2018, 67.8% were sentenced to jail, compared to 95.9% of all repeat offenders.

License Suspension/Revocation Actions

⇒The total number of both DMV APS and DUI postconviction suspension or revocation actions decreased by 0.9% in 2019. After a marginal increase in 2018, this potentially resumes a declining trend that started in 2008. Read More About DUI DMV License Suspensions and Restrictions

⇒In 2019, 117,067 APS license actions were taken. Of these actions, 74.0% were first-offender actions (including “zero tolerance” actions taken for drivers under age 21) and 26.0% were repeat-offender actions.

Drivers in Crashes Involving Alcohol and Drugs

⇒While the number of alcohol-involved fatalities declined by about 12% over the past 24 years, the number of drug-involved fatalities tripled over the same time period.

⇒Of all 2018 DUI arrests, 20.5% were associated with a reported traffic crash, whereas 8.1% were associated with crashes involving injuries or fatalities. Both of these statistics have been fairly stable since 2016.

⇒In 2018, three-fourths (74.5%) of drivers in alcohol- and drug-involved fatal crashes had no prior DUI or alcohol- or drug-related reckless driving conviction. In contrast, the majority (59.0%) of drivers in alcohol- and drug-involved injury crashes had at least one prior DUI or alcohol- or drug-related reckless driving conviction.

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Richard Wagner

Attorney Profile Defense Lawyer Richard Wagner upholds and defends freedoms and liberties enshrined in our United States and California Constitutions.  “Richard was able to achieve an even better outcome for my case than what we initially thought was possible. I couldn't be more grateful to h...