Does Metro Atlanta Have a DUI Problem?

Our Patch Question of the Week wants to know: are there too many drunk drivers on our roads?

We're in the midst of the holiday season, with lots of parties and good times. But in the midst of celebrations, tragedy can strike when someone who has had too much to drink gets behind the wheel of a car.

DUIs know no age limit or gender. An 81-year-old woman was recently charged with DUI in a multi-car collison in Sandy Springs. Her black SUV crossed into Roswell Road's northbound lanes and struck another vehicle head-on and then hit a utility pole before landing on its side.

In neighboring Dunwoody, police shot and killed a man after he allegedly rammed several vehicles along Ashford-Dunwoody Road and Perimeter Mall, and evaded police. Records show the 34-year-old Marietta man had been charged with two DUIs in Cobb County.

But the holiday season isn't the only time when tragedy strikes. Last month, Fox 5 news anchor Amanda Davis was charged with DUI after a wrong way crash in Midtown. Back in April, a Decatur bicyclist was struck by a driver with previous vehicular misdemeanors in Gwinnett County. The driver was not charged in the incident.

Law enforcement authorities continue to respond with crackdowns and more funds dedicated to DUI enforcement. Sandy Springs Police announced this week it will conduct a number of speed enforcement details in addition to seatbelt enforcement and safety checks during a holiday season initiative. 

And the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS) has awarded from its Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic or H.E.A.T. program.

Patch wants to know: does metro Atlanta have a DUI problem? Do you feel safe when you're traveling on our roads, going to or from work, or heading out to your office or neighborhood holiday party? Are law enforcement authorities doing enough to curb the problem, or can more be done? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below.


Related Items:

Man Killed For Evading Police Had Similar Charges In Cobb.

Solicitor Won't Prosecute Decatur Bike Fatality.

Atlanta Police Receive Grant For Local DUI Enforcement.

Elderly Woman In Friday Night SUV Crash Charged With DUI.

Sandy Springs Police To Crack Down On DUI Drivers.

Longtime Atlanta news anchor charged with DUI after wrong way crash in Midtown

Bryan December 13, 2012 at 05:17 PM
Amen again!
Lyn Conley December 13, 2012 at 05:52 PM
One drunk driver is one too many. But everyone knows that drinking and driving is against the law. I agree that cell phone usage is perhaps even a bigger problem. If YOU are driving you should not be on the phone. Pull off to the side of the road if the call is that important. And TEXTING while driving should be illegal! The lack of personal responsibility in today's society will be its ruin. People should care more about others than their own immediate gratification. (And how did Obama come into this conversation?)
Sam Cripps December 13, 2012 at 06:03 PM
Texting and driving IS illegal, but very hard to enforce. Everyone knows drinking and driving is against the law, but they still do it. Why? Because there is absolutely NO alternative. And know whats sad? The $90,000 grant that the police are getting will do absolutely nothing. All they are doing is wasting tax-payers money so they can punish more tax-payers and generate revenue for a city that's in debt - and they don't even fix the real problem! Imagine the safe driving programs Brookhaven could implement for $90,000! This is an issue that really bothers me
Sam Cripps December 13, 2012 at 06:04 PM
I meant to say "absolutely NO reasonable alternative"
Leah Salby December 13, 2012 at 06:04 PM
I know I heard. He is turning the U.S. into a 3rd world country. How did Obama get in to this thread? He causes stress because there are no jobs and if one has a job they may have to work harder, longer and/or have 2 or 3 jobs to keep up with taxation!!! Thus the drinking! LOL! The texting is also due to people driving in traffic and must keep up with their contacts, yes, it's the economy !!!!
aposter December 13, 2012 at 06:17 PM
Atlanta's DUI rate is probably average when it comes to per mile driven....its violent crime rate however is among the top in the nation. I'd much rather law enforcement resources be dedicated to reducing violent crime. Then again I guess it is much easier to bust 24 year old girls in Buckhead for one too many cosmos then it is to rid the city of gangs, thugs and vicious criminals
CJM December 13, 2012 at 06:35 PM
You are much more likely to be injured by a drunk or distracted driver--including those 24-year-old girls--than by a gang or vicious criminal.
aposter December 13, 2012 at 06:42 PM
You sure about that CJM? Midtown Atlanta (Zone 5), has been averaging over 200 aggravated assaults per year the last few years. I'm willing to be there are far far fewer DUI victims injured. Any stats to support your comment?
Sam Cripps December 13, 2012 at 06:50 PM
Whether or not his statement is right is irrelevant. The issue is whether or not Drunk Driving is a serious problem in Atlanta. The answer is yes. Furthermore I believe that there can be much more cost-effective solutions the control drunk driving, allowing more of our officers to be focused on policing violent crime
hmm December 13, 2012 at 06:57 PM
Brookhaven only goes a little paste Ashford Dunwoody on Peachtree and to Clairmont road on Buford Highway. Though I agree they should enforce speed limits on the local streets.
CNJ December 13, 2012 at 07:03 PM
I think any city that does not have an affordable, reliable public transportation has a DUI problem, and Atlanta is one of those cities.
hmm December 13, 2012 at 07:05 PM
This article can't even come up with one victim who was physically injured by a drunk driver. Yes i know it happens, and police should be looking for DUI - though they are doing far more than that, its a revenue tool for them. CJM's stat incorrect. And the article including non DUI related accidents is weird.
CJM December 13, 2012 at 11:25 PM
Boo hoo. Your guy lost. Get over it.
CJM December 13, 2012 at 11:30 PM
No stats needed. It's common sense. And, as another commenter points out, irrelevant. Neither problem makes the other one less troublesome.
Bill Woolf December 13, 2012 at 11:43 PM
For what it's worth, the issue is not whether one is using a hands-free phone. That is irrelevant. The incidence of wrecks while driving and talking on the phone is virtually the same as that of driving drunk, and whether the cellphone is hands-free or not has no effect on the percentage of accidents. The problem is that the driver's mind is on something other than driving. The human subconscious mind will immediatly disregard something like a radio broadcast when confronted with a hazardous driving situation, but we are not programed to disregard another person to whom we are speaking. It somehow runs against our genetic structure to shut out another person completely in order to concentrate on something more important, or at least to do something like this without thinking about it first. If the person with whom we are talking is sitting beside us in a car, our amazing brains process that fact instantaneouly and assume that the other person sees what we see, so nothing needs to be said to him or her when we turn our attention to driving. But driving and talking on the phone cannot be done safely. Period.
"E Pluribus Unum" December 14, 2012 at 04:24 AM
Atl Resident....you had to be drinking, texting and trying to call a taxi when you took the left turn with your black thugs in Midtown comment.
"E Pluribus Unum" December 14, 2012 at 04:30 AM
Low and Behold...so what's your point? Whatever you said appears to be delusional, misplaced and reeking of grandeur. One has to be brave to make pointless statements. That's weird.
ari December 14, 2012 at 03:36 PM
Dookie Doo December 15, 2012 at 06:02 AM
we should begin to execute people convicted of vehicular manslaughter with dui involved. we need to clean up the gene pool a little bit. if youre too stupid to figure out that you shouldnt drive drunk, you dont deserve to take up space in a modern society.
Rob December 15, 2012 at 02:41 PM
WOW.. Yet another reference to historical "Hitler" mentatlity. Perhaps you should study litereatre a bit more before you make such dmaging statements, even for a Troll!
Leah Salby December 15, 2012 at 02:49 PM
All I can say is; drink responsibly during this holiday season and get a designated driver if you are partying and plan on driving home. Have a safe holiday! Cheers!
Jerome Masters December 15, 2012 at 09:22 PM
Uck ohhhh I think you just played the race card . PS to the other person Yes I do miss Lester Maddox
Jerome Masters December 15, 2012 at 09:28 PM
Yeah like we have 4 hdkdsgtfw years to get over I T Add doi
Jerome Masters December 15, 2012 at 09:32 PM
I am not concerned abouit a drunk driver or cell phone driver coming into my house
Jerome Masters December 15, 2012 at 09:34 PM
I told you
Jerome Masters December 15, 2012 at 09:47 PM
Lets see I,m not worried about obama' lower case not an accident' I am worried about what he will do to the country If he were all white instead of half & half He would have faired worse than the peanut man. Now about drunk driving it is a problem and I am not qualified with an answer What I dislike is if I have a beer with a pizza I am subject to mbe arrested if I can,t stand on one foot with a light in my face and do the alphabet backwards
Kay Clark December 17, 2012 at 10:27 PM
Yeah...because there were no accidents and people always drove so well before cell phones were common. <eyeroll> It's amazing how some folks can drag national politics into *any* discussion. No manners at all...
Leah Salby December 18, 2012 at 12:20 AM
Oh Vay! All are sressed about Obama re election, well so am I. Manchurian candidate. I live one day at a time. Tinkering on recession. You bet, next year!
Becky December 18, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Some of the comments are scarier than the article.
SafeRide America January 25, 2013 at 10:05 PM
SafeRide America is a local non-profit driver-for-hire service that drives you AND your car for you. For less than the cost of a round trip in a taxi. You can drive yourself to the bar and call SafeRide at 404-888-0887 30-minutes before you want to be picked up. We send a uniformed (black pants and vest, white shirt with tie,) professional driver to drive you home in the comfort of your own car. Proceeds from the service help kids that have been orphaned or injured in impaired driving accidents. Don't have any money to pay for SafeRide? No problem. We have a "pay us later" policy designed to eliminate money as an excuse to drive impaired. You can also volunteer with us to earn credit to pay for the service. We have been operating in Metro Atlanta for almost 13 years and currently provide over 200 SafeRides a week.. We are on call 7 days a week from 6 pm to 4 am. We accept Cash and all major credit cards.


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