A new government report shows 37 percent of U.S. pedestrians killed in 2011 were drunk, USA Today reports.
Thirty-five percent of those killed—1,547 people—had blood alcohol levels that were at or above the legal limit for driving.
The report, by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), found among the 625 pedestrians ages 25 to 34 who were killed, half were impaired by alcohol.
Jonathan Adkins, a spokesman for the Governors Highway Safety Association, told the newspaper campaigns to reduce drunk driving may be having an unintended effect, by encouraging more drunk people to walk home. A person impaired by alcohol can make bad decisions, such as crossing against the light, or "trying to beat a bus that's coming," he said.
The NHTSA announced it is making $2 million in pedestrian safety grants available to cities with the highest rate of pedestrian deaths. It is launching a website, with the Federal Highway Administration, that provides safety tips and resources for improving pedestrian safety.
Drinking alcohol and driving simply do not go together. The human brain has to deal with many things and process countless data all the time. Alcohol affects attentiveness and one's ability to make quick decisions on the road, react to changes in the environment and execute specific, often difficult maneuvers behind the wheel. When drinking alcohol, driving becomes dangerous – and is potentially lethal! Click here to learn more.