Family Suffers From Drunk Driver Accident

By: Doanld Robinson
By: Doanld Robinson

"I was at home in my bed and two police officers knocked on my door and told me my boyfriend was killed in a car accident," said Crystal Carr of Waynesboro.

25-year-old Carr is pondering her future as she tries to deal with the death of a loved one. Her 25-year-old boyfriend, Jonah Brown was a passenger in a single car accident that left two others injured and Brown dead.

"I will never get over it because I've been with him for ten years," said Brown, "we had a special bond and a kid together. Every time I look at my son, I see him."

Brown and his friends had been drinking at a friends house on Friday night, on their way back to Waynesboro driver Michael Jones lost control of the car.

"There are some people when they get behind the wheel of a car they don't believe anything could happen with serious consequences," said Sgt. Frank Pyanoe of the Virginia State Police.

Despite this recent accident, the Virginia State Police says the number of fatalities related to alcohol in Augusta County this year are low. Out of the 11 fatality accidents in Augusta County this year, 2 involved alcohol.

"I think we are finally making an impact," said Sgt. Pyanoe, "it has become socially unexceptionable."

Carr says the loss of her son's father has impacted the entire family and if anyone can learn anything from her story then it's worth talking about.

"I strongly advice people not to drink or drive," said Carr, "if someone is driving drunk take the keys from them."

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Drunk Driving Statistics

  • Traffic fatalities in alcohol-related crashes rose by four percent from 1999 to
    2000.

  • The 16,653 alcohol-related fatalities in 2000 (40 percent of total traffic fatalities for the year) represent a 25 percent reduction from the 22,084 alcohol-related fatalities reported in 1990 (50 percent of the total).

  • NHTSA estimates that alcohol was involved in 40 percent of fatal crashes and in eight percent of all crashes in 2000.

  • The 16,653 fatalities in alcohol-related crashes during 2000 represent an average of one alcohol-related fatality every 32 minutes.

  • An estimated 310,000 persons were injured in crashes where police reported that alcohol was present — an average of one person injured approximately every two minutes.

  • Approximately 1.5 million drivers were arrested in 1999 for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics.

  • This is an arrest rate of 1 for every 121 licensed drivers in the United States.

  • About 3 in every 10 Americans will be involved in an alcohol-related crash at some time in their lives.

  • In 2000, 31 percent of all traffic fatalities occurred in crashes in which at least one driver or nonoccupant had a BAC of 0.10 g/dl or greater. Sixty-nine percent of the 12,892 people killed in such crashes were themselves intoxicated. The remaining 31 percent were passengers, nonintoxicated drivers, or nonintoxicated nonoccupants.

  • In the state of Kentucky, there were 820 total fatalities in 2000. Of those, 203 had a BAC greater than or equal to 0.10, which accounted for 25 percent of the total fatalities.

Source: www.nhtsa.dot.gov (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Web site) contributed to this report.


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