The 2013 data is in, and according to the Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, the total number of DUIs in Arizona dropped for the first time in decades. The Office of Highway Safety coordinates a state wide task force specifically targeting drunk drivers. As shown in the chart below, most of the offenses the task force tracked decreased from 2012.

*Source: Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety

This year, the total number of DUI Arrests went from 32,171 in 2012, to dropping a little more than 3,000 arrests to, 29,163 in 2013. An interesting fact that is not shown in the above chart is that in the 2013 holiday season, which is from November 25, to New Years Eve, authorities made nearly 4,000 DUI arrests.

Arizona has had a steady increase in DUI arrests over the past decade, starting from nearly 5,300 in 2004, to almost 20,000 in 2010, and around 32,000 in 2012. With this steady increase people might start to ask: Why are the DUI arrests down now?

The answer may be deceiving, because on its face it may seem that drinking and driving has decreased. Alberto Gutier, director of the Governor’s Office of Highway Patrol attributed these decreasing DUI arrests to Arizonians finally starting to realize the consequences for driving under the influence. However, the reality is it is not because people are not drinking and driving, but rather because of the decrease in law enforcement. According to the Office of Highway Safety, there were 5,000 less deputies participating in the task force in 2013 than there were in 2012.

If you do find yourself in a DUI situation in 2014, it is important to know your rights. Give us a call at Rosenstein Law Group and we will be there to defend you.