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Okinawa still worst in Japan for drunk drivers

Date Posted: 2008-02-10

The numbers look only marginally better than a year earlier, but Okinawans’ propensity for driving after drinking has once more given the Prefecture the dubious distinction of ‘worst in the nation’.
Every statistic released this week by the Okinawa Prefecture Police casts this island prefecture in a negative light for a 13th consecutive year. Forty people died in accidents involving drunk drivers last year, and Prefecture Police say “Japan-wide the numbers are down, but here in Okinawa we’re still about 2.2 times the national average.” A total of 3,661 drunk drivers had their licenses stripped for 90 days last year in Okinawa, 1,000 more than in Tokyo. Still, police say accidents involving drinking drivers did dip slightly last year, a good thing for Okinawa’s citizens.
Traffic accidents were higher in Okinawa than anywhere else in Japan, with 6,525 recorded. Prefecture Police say the only glimmer of good news is that after 11 years of increasing traffic accident casualties, the rate dropped 1.9% in 2007.

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