New Jersey DWI Defense Attorney – Are Women More Likely to Get a DUI than Men if Arrested? Why?

New Jersey DWI Defense Attorney – Are Women More Likely to Get a DUI than Men if Arrested? Why?There’s no question that there are more men who are arrested for drunk driving than women. However, the gap in the number of DUI and DWI arrests between men and women is getting smaller every year. And, studies suggest that, if a woman is pulled over, she will be more likely to be convicted of DUI than a man under the same circumstances. Today, on the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog, we’ll look at some of the statistics and some of the reasons why.

National and New Jersey Drunk Driving Statistics by Gender

In 1980, only about 10% of drunk driving arrests were women – and 90% were men. In 2016, that number had risen to nearly 25% for women and 75% for men.

In 2008, women were behind the wheel in 15% of all drunk driving fatalities in the United States, compared to 85% for men, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In 2017, the percentage for women had increased to 20% for drunk driving incidents involving at least the loss of one life.

Clearly, the number of women who are being arrested is increasing steadily over time, although men are still nearly 4 times more likely to be convicted of drunk driving. The simplest explanation for the increase is that women are now driving more than ever before: social and cultural changes have led to more women driving. These changes have also led to more women drinking outside the home. Nonetheless, if a woman does get behind the wheel, and is then pulled over, she will also be more likely to be arrested and convicted. Why?

Women May be More Likely to Be Convicted of DUI or DWI Once Arrested

Although women may be less likely to get behind the wheel than men while drunk, the studies suggest that once pulled over, a woman will be more likely to be arrested or convicted than a man under the same circumstances. One well-known reason is that women are generally lighter than men. Therefore, a woman who consumes the same amount of alcohol as a man will likely have a higher blood alcohol concentration.

However, weight is not the only factor at play. Multiple research studies have concluded that women will have higher blood ethanol concentrations (BAC) than men after consuming the same amount of alcohol, even after the study is controlled for weight. One of the ways the body breaks down alcohol is through an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase. Studies have concluded that men may have 2 to 4 times as much alcohol dehydrogenase in the stomach as women, meaning women may reach the same BAC after consuming half as much alcohol as a man who weighs the same.

In summary, women may not process alcohol as efficiently as men AND women tend to be lighter. Therefore, a woman can become legally intoxicated faster than a man under the same circumstances, having the same number of drinks: it just takes less alcohol for women to reach the legal limit of .08% BAC than for men.

New Jersey DWI Attorney Edward M. Janzekovich Knows that Anybody Can be Charged with DUI

If you have been charged with DUI or DWI, you deserve a good lawyer, no matter who you are. Everyone is entitled to a lawyer, and a good attorney can make all the difference. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.