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Alcoholism in the state of New Hampshire is a major concern that affects many of the residents of the state, and represents a wide-ranging number of social consequences, thus the need for a greater number of quality alcohol rehab programs to be available there. A variety of alcohol rehabs are available in and around New Hampshire, but it can be confusing if an individual seeking help does not have a sufficient amount of professional guidance. There are inpatient alcohol rehabilitation facilities in New Hampshire that offer residential programs, where the individual can reside at the alcohol treatment center and receive around the clock professional support. Outpatient alcohol rehab is where an individual from New Hampshire that is being treated for an alcohol addiction can visit the facility at various intervals for several hours at a time.

While many people that are seeking alcohol treatment in New Hampshire for alcoholism may wish to choose local outpatient alcohol rehabilitation in order to stay close to home, not everyone will benefit from this limited level of short term care. For an individual from New Hampshire with a moderate to serious alcoholism problem, residential alcohol rehab may be the best alcohol treatment option.

Alcohol rehabilitation generally begins with detoxification, which is the process of safely managing the physical symptoms of alcohol withdrawal; the alcohol rehab program should then follow up with individual or group counseling, as well as skills and training courses to help prepare the individual for returning to New Hampshire and living an alcohol -free lifestyle. The primary goal of any quality alcohol rehab should be to enable the individual from New Hampshire to successfully achieve a state of lasting sobriety.


New Hampshire alcohol related information and statistics are provided by the US Dept. of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Conference of State Legislatures, 2004. New Hampshire had a mind-boggling 81% of traffic fatalities that were alcohol related in 1986, which translates to 139 deaths. Since that time, the percentage and actual number of alcohol related fatalities has dropped by over half. 1992 showed the lowest number of drunk driving deaths, with 40. In 2008, out of all traffic fatalities, 32% involved a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher, up from the previous year.

The table below shows the total number of traffic fatalities (Tot) for the New Hampshire, alcohol related fatalities (Alc-Rel) and fatalities in crashes where the highest BAC in the crash was 0.08 or above (0.08+). All 50 states in the US now apply two statutory offenses to operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. The first (and original) offense is known either as driving under the influence (DUI), driving while intoxicated/impaired (DWI), or operating while intoxicated/impaired (OWI). This is based upon a New Hampshire police officer's observations (driving behavior, slurred speech, the results of a roadside sobriety test, etc.) The second offense is called "illegal per se", which is driving with a BAC of 0.08% or higher. Since 2002 it has been illegal in all 50 states to drive with a BAC that is 0.08% or higher.

It is important to note that the New Hampshire drunk driving statistics, as shown below, include data from individuals in New Hampshire who were in an alcohol-related crash, but not driving a motor vehicle at the time. The U.S. Department of Transportation defines alcohol-related deaths as "fatalities that occur in crashes where at least one driver or non-occupant (pedestrian or bilcyclist) involved in the crash has a positive Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) value." The fatality rates shown below refer to the number of people killed in all traffic accidents and, separately, in alcohol related traffic accidents, per 100 million vehicle miles traveled.

Year

Fatalities

Tot

Alc-Rel

%

0.08+

%

1982

173

111

64

98

57

1983

191

103

54

92

48

1984

192

109

57

96

50

1985

191

132

69

79

42

1986

172

139

81

75

44

1987

179

93

52

64

36

1988

166

84

51

64

38

1989

187

93

50

78

42

1990

158

77

48

67

42

1991

144

67

46

61

42

1992

122

40

32

36

30

1993

121

52

43

47

39

1994

119

50

42

45

38

1995

118

47

39

36

31

1996

134

47

35

41

31

1997

125

60

48

51

41

1998

128

63

49

45

35

1999

140

66

47

45

32

2000

126

49

39

45

35

2001

142

67

47

53

37

2002

127

50

39

45

35

2003

127

52

41

43

34

2004

171

59

35

51

30

2005

166

60

36

55

33

2006

127

51

40

47

37

2007

129

45

34

34

26

2008

139

53

38

45

32



2003-2004 New Hampshire Alcohol Related Issue: Percentage % Ranking

Alcohol Abuse or Dependence

7.77%

[26th of 51]

Alcohol consumption > Binge drinkers

16%

[22nd of 52]

Alcohol consumption > Casual drinkers

66.1%

[5th of 52]

Alcohol consumption > Heavy drinkers

6%

[9th of 52]

Alcohol related traffic fatalities

59

[45th of 51]

Alcohol related traffic fatalities (per capita)

0.45 per 10,000 people

[39th of 51]

Alcohol related traffic fatalities, as a percentage

35%

[41st of 51]

Alcohol Use in the Past Month

60.17%

[5th of 51]

Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2003-2004, Office of Applied Studies 2003-2004 and the MADD Official Website statistics 2004

When is a driver considered to be legally drunk in New Hampshire?

  • Non-commercial drivers age 21+ in New Hampshire are considered legally drunk when their blood alcohol level is .08 or more.
  • Drivers of commercial vehicles in New Hampshire are legally drunk when their blood alcohol level is .04 percent or greater. In New Hampshire, school bus drivers are commercial drivers.
  • Drivers under 21 in New Hampshire are legally drunk when their blood alcohol concentration measures .02 or more.

Penalties for Drunk Driving in New Hampshire

  • First-time offenders in New Hampshire are subject to pay a fine of at least $500. These offenders must also successfully complete an impaired driver intervention program. The offender's driver's license will be revoked for nine months to two years. The judge may sentence the person to attend a New Hampshire alcohol treatment and counseling. The judge may also require the offender to submit to random urinalysis or any other tests the judge finds appropriate.
  • A person in New Hampshire who commits a second offense within 10 years of the first offense faces up to one year in prison, followed by seven days at a state-operated multiple DWI offender intervention detention center. If no space is available in the center, the offender will be assigned to a seven-day residential intervention program. Second-time offenders are also required to pay a fine of at least $750. The driver's license revocation period is at least three years. The judge may sentence the offender to attend a New Hampshire alcohol treatment and counseling. The judge may also require the offender to submit to random urinalysis or any other tests the judge finds appropriate.
  • A person in New Hampshire who commits a third offense within a 10-year period is subject to all of the penalties applicable to second-time offenders. These offenders, however, must serve at least 180 days in a county correctional facility, followed by at least 28 days in a residential treatment program or an intensive course of substance abuse treatment. Additionally, the offender's driver's license will be revoked indefinitely. The offender may petition the court for eligibility to re-apply for a driver's license after five years.
  • A person in New Hampshire who commits a fourth DWI within a 10-year period is subject to all of the penalties applicable to second and third-time offenders, except that these offenders cannot petition the court for eligibility to re-apply for a driver's license for seven years.

Enhanced Penalties in New Hampshire for Aggravated Drunk Driving

A person 21 and older is guilty of aggravated driving while intoxicated in New Hampshire if his or her BAC measures .08 or more, or in the case of a person under 21, if his or her BAC measures .02 or more, and, at the time of the offense, the person was driving at a speed of more than 30 miles per hour over the speed limit; caused a collision that resulted in serious bodily injury; attempted to elude a law enforcement officer; or carried a passenger under 16. A person is also guilty of aggravated DWI if he or she drives with a BAC of .16 or more. Penalties are as follows:

  • First-time offenders in New Hampshire who did not cause a collision that resulted in serious bodily injury to another face up to one year in prison, followed by service of seven days at a state-operated multiple DWI offender intervention detention center. If no space is available in the center, the offender will be assigned to a seven-day residential intervention program. The offender will also be subject to pay a fine of at least $750. Driving privileges will be revoked for 18 months to two years. The judge may sentence the offender to additional alcohol treatment and counseling. The judge may also require the offender to submit to random urinalysis or such other test as the judge finds appropriate.
  • An offender in New Hampshire who caused a collision that resulted in serious bodily injury to another faces up to seven years in prison, followed by service of seven days at a state-operated multiple DWI offender intervention detention center. If no space is available in the center, the offender will be assigned to a seven-day New Hampshire residential intervention program. The offender will also be subject to pay a fine of at least $1,000. Driving privileges will be revoked for 18 months to two years.

Commercial Drivers

In addition to other penalties associated with New Hampshire's DWI laws, a commercial driver who is convicted of DWI while operating a commercial vehicle will have his or her commercial driver's license suspended for at least one year. If, however, the offender was driving a commercial vehicle and transporting hazardous materials at the time, the suspension period is three years. A commercial driver in New Hampshire who commits a second DWI while driving a commercial vehicle will have his or her commercial license suspended for life, which may or may not be reduced to a period of 10 years.

Drivers Under 21

A person under 21 who is convicted of DWI or aggravated DWI in New Hampshire faces the same penalties as an adult offender, except that the minor's driver's license, regardless of the offense, will be revoked for at least one year. Additionally, an underage offender may be required to install an ignition interlock device in any vehicle registered to the offender or used by the offender on a regular basis until he or she reaches 21 or for at least 12 months, whichever period is longer.

Ignition Interlock

Any person in New Hampshire whose license has been revoked or suspended for an aggravated DWI or for a second or subsequent DWI may be required to install an ignition interlock device in any vehicle registered to that person or used by that person on a regular basis after the revocation or suspension period expires for six months to two years.

What is New Hampshire's Dram Shop Statute?

Under New Hampshire law, a New Hampshire drinking establishment that negligently serves alcohol to a minor or to an intoxicated person may be liable for resulting injuries suffered by another person. The person who becomes intoxicated may not bring an action for negligent service of alcoholic beverages against the drinking establishment for injuries he or she may have suffered because of his or her own intoxication. An intoxicated person may, however, bring an action for personal injuries against the drinking establishment for "reckless service" of alcoholic beverages. Under this part of New Hampshire's Dram Shop Statute, service is "reckless" when the establishment intentionally serves alcohol to a person when the server knows, or a reasonable person should have known, that such service creates an unreasonable risk of physical harm to the drinker or to others.

Criminal Liability in New Hampshire for Selling or Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor

It is a crime in New Hampshire to sell or furnish alcohol to a person under 21. Individuals in New Hampshire who violate this law face up to one year in prison and may be subject to pay a fine of up to $2,000. Licensed drinking establishments that violate this law face suspension of liquor licenses, forfeiture, administrative fees, and criminal penalties, including a fine of up to $100,000.

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  • Among those that are intoxicated by alcohol, a common cause of fire is falling asleep or passing out before extinguishing a cigarette.
  • Individuals who have a family history of alcoholism or those who are closely associated on a regular basis with heavy drinkers are at a much greater risk of developing an alcohol abuse problem.
  • Blackouts most likely occur because the function of the hippocampus, the part of the brain that registers memory, is depressed by alcohol; whether these memories do not get registered or whether they become registered but cannot be retrieved, have not been determined.
  • Substance abuse treatment for alcoholism is much better than the two other alternatives, which are incarceration or eventual death from an alcohol related health condition.