According to the Crime & Safety study recently released by DNA Info, drunk driving arrests in the East Village nearly tripled last year, with 141.4 percent more arrested (140 incidents) in the 9th Precinct than the year before. Damningly, each year there’s been a greater increase — since 2001, arrests have gone up 600 percent. Yet, in the rest of the city, arrests have mostly declined.
Community Board 3 district manager Susan Stetzer said the numbers were reflective of enforcement, but also seemed to implicate the number of bars and clubs in the neighborhood — more cops around to crack down on the “ever-increasing amount of nightlife establishments,” as it were.
But it bears mentioning that if people are getting drunk in the East Village and driving home, the chances of them being East Villagers — or even Manhattanites — are pretty minimal. So, here’s another thing to blame on the influx of non-residents cluttering up the streets and bars on weekends — increased DWIs. This will not increase neighborly relations.
In comparison, the Lower East Side had an 86.4 percent jump in DWIs (151 incidents last year) and a 357.6 percent increase since 2001.
People are going to keep coming to the East Village and Lower East Side to party, at least for the forseeable future. But the beauty of New York City is that you don’t have to drive, which makes it especially stupid when people do it after a night of drinking. Come on. At least rent a giant limo if you’re set on being obnoxious, and have someone else drive you.