Federal Government Analysis of Drunk Driving Fatalities

April 17, 2007 by Mark Siesel

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted an analysis of drunk driving fatalities NHTSA using a statistical analysis called the "Fatality Analysis Reporting System" or "FARS." The study reviewed fatal crashes of passenger cars, SUVS, pickup trucks, vans and motorcycles for the years 2000-2004 and age groups of under 20, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59 and over 59.

The significant findings of this study of DWI fatalities are as follows:

The age groups with the largest driver alcohol involvement in fatal passenger car crashes were 20-29 and 30-39.

For motorcycle operators, the age groups with the largest alcohol involvement were 30-39 and 40-49.

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Mothers Drunk Driving in New York--An Epidemic?

April 8, 2007 by Mark Siesel

Since September of 2006, there have several cases of mothers driving while intoxicated with their children in the car. Most tragically, Ann Marie Ciarcia, of Yorktown Heights, New York was driving while intoxicated last September after a night of drinking and partying with her daughter and daughter's friend, 16 year old Emily Cornish. Ms. Ciarcia's blood alcohol level was .15, nearly twice the legal limit of .08, when she began traveling northbound in the southbound lanes of the Saw Mill Parkway and crashed her minivan into a Honda Odyssey driven by Edward Cook, a Yorktown resident who was on his way to work.

The head on collision killed Ms. Cornish, who was the only child of Carol Cornish. Ms. Cornish informed the Court that although she had forgiven Ms. Ciarcia, she felt that Ciarcia needed to be held accountable.

The Yorktown Heights mom who pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter, second-degree vehicular assault and driving while intoxicated was sentenced to 16 months to 4 years in state prison Friday.

Ciarcia's husband will now care for their four children, who are all in therapy.

In December of 2006, Jeanine Chrysogelos, a Somers, New York resident, was arrested for driving while intoxicated with her two children in the car.

State troopers say Ms.Chrysogelos drove her two children home from school Wednesday after she had been drinking. Authorities say she passed out in the driveway while her sons ran to a neighbor's house to call for help. Police say Chrysogelos had a blood alcohol level three times the legal limit. Chrysogelos was charged with aggravated DWI ( a blood alcohol level of .18 and above) and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Ms. Chrysogelos was not permitted to visit with her family the weekend of the accident and during Christmas.

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