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Drunk at 130 MPH: Ryan Dunn Blood Tests and Accident Reconstruction Point to Deadly Mix

7 comments

Now we know. West Goshen Police Chief Michael Carroll told the Daily Local News that Jackass celebrity Ryan Dunn’s BAC (blood alcohol content) was over twice the legal limit when he and his passenger died in a fiery crash at 2:30 am Monday morning. What’s more, Carroll says an accident reconstruction team determined Dunn’s Porsche 911 may have been speeding as fast as 140 mph when it struck the guardrail.

Ryan Dunn, far left. Passenger and fatality Zachary Hartwell, far right.

Carroll says Dunn’s BAC was .196. The legal limit in Pennsylvania is .08. Carroll said alcohol was the only intoxicating substance detected.

According to the Daily Local News, an employee of Barnaby’s of America, the pub where Dunn was drinking prior to the accident, said the business had no comment about the blood alcohol level findings. Previously, bar manager, Jim O’Brien, said Dunn "didn’t seem to be intoxicated at the time he left."

So far there’s been no word about the findings on Roger Ebert’s twitter account. Ebert caused a cyberspace firestorm Monday with his twitter comment, “Friends don’t let jackasses drink and drive.”

Whatever one may think of Ebert’s tweet, let us hope the tragic death of Dunn and his passenger, Zachary Hartwell, serve as a cautionary tale about the dangers of drinking and driving and excessive speed.

UPDATE: The Westboro Baptist Church has apparently announced its intention to protest at Dunn’s funeral. The Kansas church is infamous for protesting at the funerals of military service personnel and others. They have carried banners with slogans such as "Thank God for dead soldiers" and "God hates Fags." And on it goes. . .

7 Comments

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  1. Tom Taylor says:
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    Sorry, and perhaps it’s that I’m naive.
    I didn’t think you could buy cars that would go that fast, and run them on public highways.
    But, some research I’ve done recently indicates you can buy a car that will go 200 mph. On the street.
    I think it’s time to cut this out.

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    Amen Tom. Thank goodness he didn’t hit anyone else.

  3. Tom Taylor says:
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    Yes, Pierce. Speed is such a factor, and I’ve read much lately about just how dangerous it is. You had a blog recently – I’ll have to find it and link – and we’ve seen several young people die recently because of high-speed driving. And so often we see the “run off the road, over correct” reason for devastating wrecks.

  4. CommonSense says:
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    No offense to Tom but the first thing I think about when I read this story is the drinking and driving, then I think how can someone think it is safe to go 140 on a road that was built for 55 or less.

    I would never think that we should outlaw cars that go to fast.

    It is safe to say that Ryan Dunn knew that he was drunk and knew that he was speeding.
    So please don’t blame an inanimate object for the bad judgement of Ryan Dunn.

    To outlaw anything that may kill us if used improperly would leave you with nothing.

  5. Pete says:
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    Sad that everyone is focusing on the car. The truth is that alcohol is still far to underestimated.

    Our culture often minimizes the dangers of its drug of choice: people want to be able to drink and drive. (really)

    While madd etc have made great headway, I still am often surprised by how many people I run into that think its ok to drink and drive.

    In the end, Dunn was a professional Jackass, and he died as they often do – as a product of their own stupidity and poor choices.

    Oh, and a special note for readers who don’t know: alcohol is a drug, and consuming it is “doing drugs”, and leads to a drugged state in which your judgement and coordination and thinking are impaired. Get over it.

    Dont drink and drive, and especially don’t glorify idiots who demonstrate poor judgment like the jackasses.

    Sorry for his family that he is dead, but I also have to feel like maybe the world needed to see it. Perhaps he has done us a service by his death that makes it all worthwhile.

  6. Tom Taylor says:
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    I apologize, folks.
    I didn’t mean to steer the conversation away from the real issue. I had just been so taken aback by stories that people can buy a car that goes 200 miles an hour and drive it on public roadways. And I was disturbed by a story of some kids riding 129 mph in a Dodge Challenger and getting killed. DWI is obviously the most germane issue in the Ryan Dunn case, but speeding is a major factor as well.
    It’s good to get the back-and-forth commentary going, though. It gets the issues out there.