Everything gets ranked these days, including sports teams, colleges, students, lawyers, vacations, and products. For products, you can find lists of everything from the best weight-loss pills to the best vacuum cleaners. Neither of those is recommended as a gift, by the way, even though it is the holiday season. And because it is the holiday season, one thing being ranked is drunk driving rates. A recent Forbes article compares the rates among the 50 states and D.C.
The Ranking Methodology
To determine the drunk driving rate for each state, Forbes uses a methodology consisting of six weighted criteria:
- Number of drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes per 100,000 licensed drivers (20% of score)
- Number of DUI arrests per 100,000 licensed drivers (20%)
- Number of people killed in crashes involving a drunk driver per 100,000 state residents (15%)
- Percent of total traffic deaths that were caused by drivers with a BAC of 0.01-0.07: (10%)
- Percent of total traffic deaths that were caused by drivers with a BAC of 0.08 or higher: (20%)
- Number of drunk drivers under age 21 involved in fatal crashes per 100,000licensed drivers (15%)
The data was acquired from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and each state’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV). The data is a five-year average, except for criteria 4 and 5, which are from 2020. After obtaining the data, Forbes calculated a numerical score for each state, with the scores ranging from 0 to 100.
Where Is Ohio in the Rankings?
The Buckeye State is ranked #35 out of 51. Unlike the College Football Playoff ranking, the Forbes list puts the worst at #1 and the best at #51. Ohio’s score of 40.43 was determined by the following statistics:
- For every 100,000 licensed drivers, 149.66 have received a DUI (called ‘OVI’ in Ohio).
- For every 1000,000 licensed drivers, 4.2 drunk drivers were involved in fatal crashes.
- For traffic deaths in 2020, 36.4% were caused by a drunk driver.
- For every 100,000 residents, 3 people have been killed in drunk driving accidents.
What Are the ‘Best’ and ‘Worst’ States?
To understand Ohio’s ranking, it is helpful to put the data in context. The worst state on the list is Montana, and the best state (territory) is Washington D.C. Here is how the numbers compare:
Number of drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes per 100,000 licensed drivers:
Montana-8.39 Ohio-4.2 D.C.-1.84
Number of DUI arrests per 100,000 licensed drivers
Montana-478.26 Ohio-149.66 D.C.-1.69
Number of people killed in crashes involving a drunk driver per 100,000 state residents:
Montana-6.92 Ohio-3 D.C.-1.43
Percent of total traffic deaths that were caused by drunk drivers:
Montana-45 Ohio-36.4 D.C.-19
Is It All About Money?
It appears an underlying purpose of the article is to persuade readers to use the page to find auto insurance. Auto insurance rates increase significantly following a DUI/OVI conviction. To avoid premium increases and other consequences when charged with a DUI/OVI, it is beneficial to have representation of a Buckeye State DUI/OVI law firm with high rankings (where being in the top 5% is a good thing!).