Last weekend in Joplin, a suspected drunk driver tried to run away from the scene of an accident, but he was chased down and detained until law enforcement arrived. According to Joplin Police Cpl. Chuck Niess, 21 year-old Erin M. Hyder was speeding down Pool Street on Saturday night when he collided with a parked vehicle and a utility pole. Hyder attempted to flee the scene on foot, but the owner of the parked vehicle was able to stop him, with the help of another witness.
Hyder's passenger, 37 year-old Robert Frazier, was injured in the accident. Hyder was arrested: he is currently facing charges of driving while intoxicated, driving with a suspended license, driving without insurance, careless driving, and improper display of license plates. He is also charged with leaving the scene of an injury accident - a felony offense here in Missouri.
• Nationwide, approximately 12,000 people die in drunk driving accidents every year, while about 900,000 people are arrested for drunk driving.
• About 300,000 (1/3 ) of these 900,000 drunk driving arrests are repeat offenders. What's more, according to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the average impaired driver has driven drunk 80 times before his or her first arrest.
• A drunk driving conviction may cost you your job and/or professional license.
• In 2010, there were 218 drunk driving related deaths (along with 3,823 injuries) on Missouri roadways. Every 2.2 hours, a Missourian was killed by a drunk driver.
• Drunk driving accidents are more likely to happen over the weekend: in 2010, 59.4% of these crashes happened on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday. Additionally, 64% of drunk driving accidents occurred between 7:00 p.m. and 2:59 a.m.
• You are considered legally drunk in Missouri if you have a blood alcohol content of .08% or higher. However, you may be charged with driving when intoxicated - no matter what your blood alcohol content is - if you are impaired as a result of drinking.
• According to MADD, 1 in 5 teens binge drink - but only 1 in 100 parents believes that their teen binge drinks. 1 in 3 fatal car crashes involving teens also involves alcohol.
• 90% of all drunk driving occurs after hanging out or dining with friends, family, and co-workers.
• A "simple" drunk driving conviction can cost an average of $6,140 to $19,450. If you injure or kill someone, the cost will be much, much greater - in many ways.
These statistics are particularly affecting when you also consider the following:
• 100% of all drunk driving deaths can be avoided.
• 100% of all drunk driving injuries can be averted.
• 100% of all drunk driving arrests can be prevented.
The solution is amazingly simple: just don't drink and drive. Call a cab, or text a friend, or simply stay put, and help keep Missouri roads safe.
Information provided courtesy of Aaron Sachs & Associates, P.C..