NH DHHS Issues Brief: Impaired Driving in NH

Concord – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)

Bureau of Drug and Alcohol Services (BDAS) is issuing “Impaired Driving in

NH” the sixth in a series of issue briefs highlighting concerns related to

alcohol and other drugs in New Hampshire. This Brief shares not only data,

but resources and strategies available to community stakeholders to assist

in reducing the public safety threat of impaired driving. The release of

the Brief coincides with a statewide Impaired Driver Symposium being held

on September 11, 2014 at the Grappone Center

in Concord, NH.

“Impaired driving is a public safety threat that requires collaboration and

a comprehensive approach”, stated DHHS Drug and Alcohol Service’s Director

Joe Harding. “To this end we have improved our laws, transformed our

rehabilitation system, have recently made substance use disorders treatment

available to low income citizens of our state and are now striving to

improve communication and collaboration between state agencies, members of

the criminal justice system and service providers”.

According to the New Hampshire Department of Safety, there were 4,763 DWI

convictions in

2013, and 32 people died in motor vehicle crashes related to alcohol in

2012, an increase of 19% compared to 2011. Alcohol is not the only problem

on New Hampshire’s roadways. Law enforcement have seen an increase in

other drug impaired driving, reflected in fatal crash data,

that shows that there were 27 drug-related motor vehicle fatalities in

2012, representing 25% of

all motor vehicle related fatalities.

"Impairment continues to be the leading cause of fatal car crashes, and it

is our continued goal

to work on messaging, education and enforcement in hopes of preventing a

tragedy," said New Hampshire State Police Colonel Robert Quinn.

A state-wide Impaired Driver Symposium is being held September 11th at the

Grappone Center

in Concord to enhance collaboration between law enforcement, courts,

substance use disorder service providers and license restoration through

the New Hampshire Department of Safety. The symposium provides an

important opportunity for stakeholders and policy makers to continue to

improve public safety and health outcomes for New Hampshire residents.

The brief provides strategies and resources for communities, professionals,

and the public to learn more about Impaired Driving in New Hampshire and

what they can do. To read Impaired Driving in NH visit

www.dhhs.nh.gov/dcbcs/bdas/ , www.drugfreenh.org , and