JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Jacksonville is one of the most dangerous cities to drive, ranking No. 1 for deadly DUIs, according to one study.
The numbers come from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Action News Jax’s Meghan Moriarty took a look at the data and found an alarming trend that drivers need to be aware of.
You’ve heard the slogan “Arrive Alive, Don’t Drink and Drive,” a common phrase meant to remind people that driving impaired could cost a life.
An all-too-real reminder for the Crittenden family. A picture-perfect Christmas photo from 2019; in future family photos, one person will always be missing.
“My life was flipped upside down the day that my husband died and especially because his death was 100% preventable,” Charrell Crittenden said.
Zarrell Crittenden was killed in January 2020 by a wrong-way driver who was later charged with DUI manslaughter.
“He died at the scene so there was no saying goodbye for me. There was no saying goodbye for my children,” Charrell Crittenden said.
In Jacksonville, we rank No. 1 out of the top 100 most populated U.S. cities for deadly DUI crashes, according to data from the NHTSA compiled by Sellmax. Action News Jax told you last month when a family of three was killed in Arlington after a suspected drunk driver hit their car, going 100 miles per hour.
“From looking at the data, I do think that there’s a lot of deadly crashes because you know you have cities that have a lot higher population and they have a lot less deadly crashes than Jacksonville,” Sean Pour, co-founder of Sellmax, said.
Numbers are only available from 2017 to 2021, but the data shows Jacksonville trending upwards. From 2019 to 2020, Jacksonville doubled the number of deadly DUI crashes, going from 20 the year before to 46 in 2020.
Jacksonville ranks so high because of the number of DUI deaths relative to our population.
“Number one, making people aware that this is a bigger problem than they think. Maybe convincing people to use Uber more,” Pour said.
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The hope is that by seeing these numbers, it will inspire change.
“It’s just so sad to see and even if we can stop one from happening, it makes a big difference,” Pour said.
Pour said cities with highly rated public transportation systems ranked much lower. Places like New York City had fewer deadly crashes. The data for 2022 has yet to be released.