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Young men drive while impaired more than other groups

Young Washington men between the ages of 21 and 25 are part of the group with the highest rate of impaired driving. On the national level, this translates into 20 percent of men in this age group driving after drinking in 2014 according to a survey sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

The annual survey has been conducted since 2002 and collects self-reported behavior about drug and alcohol use. Additional information from 2014 showed that 1 in 7 young men drove after using drugs. Driving after drinking and using drugs occurred among 1 in 12 of the male respondents in the same age group.

Although young adult men engage in this behavior most often, the survey revealed a decline in drunk driving with the same demographic over the years. Fewer drivers between 21 and 25 took the wheel while impaired than 13 years ago. When looking at the younger demographic of drivers ages 16 to 20, impaired driving slowed by over 50 percent. Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggested that public awareness campaigns, tough drunk driving laws and ignition interlock systems contributed to the decrease.

When police arrest a person for drunk driving, stiff penalties could result from a conviction, including jail or prison time and high fines. As a result, people who are in this position may want to meet with an attorney as soon as reasonably possible so that a strategy can be constructed to defend against the charges. A variety of options might exist, including the manner in which the authorities handled the initial traffic stop.

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