Ridgecrest is a city in Kern County, in the state of California, in the United States of America. It is located conveniently along U.S. Route 395 in the Indian Wells Valley in northeastern Kern County, adjacent to the Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake (NAWS, or China Lake). The population was 27,616 at the 2010 census as reported by the United States Census Bureau, up from 24,927 at the previous 2000 census. The city of Ridgecrest is a largely "company" oriented community big enough to provide plenty of schools, shopping and health care. It was incorporated as a city in the year of 1963.
Ridgecrest is surrounded by four mountain ranges that make it all the more appealing to the locals and to visitors alike; the Sierra Nevada on the west, the Cosos on the north, the Argus Range on the east, and the El Paso Mountains on the south. It is approximately 82 miles from the Lancaster/Palmdale area and approximately 145 miles from both Bakersfield and San Bernardino, the three nearest major urban centers that are ideal for shopping and business.
Ridgecrest is within two hours of the highest and the lowest points in the conterminous U.S., giving it a unique geographic makeup.
Ridgecrest evolved into a growing and dynamic city during the 1950’s and 1960’s as a support community to other major cities and vital to the mission of the Navy, by providing housing and services for Federal employees and contractors. Ridgecrest incorporated in 1963 and now provides shopping for over 40,000 people throughout the Indian Wells Valley and is a major area and trade center for this geographic area.
Drug and Alcohol Addiction and Substance Abuse on the Rise in and Around Ridgecrest
Sadly, drug and alcohol addiction has made a pretty serious severe and impinging effect on Ridgecrest. This area rarely had drug problems of any kind prior to the turn of the century. Now, substance abuse is quite common and popular in and around this area. The problems here stem mostly from heroin abuse, alcohol abuse, opiate pain reliever abuse, and marijuana too. If something is not done about this soon then the issue will certainly only worsen long before it gets any better.
Drug and Alcohol Addiction Statistics for a Growing Problem in and Around Ridgecrest and the Nation
Truthfully, substance abuse has been a growing problem not only in and around Ridgecrest but also across the nation too. For some statistics on this:
• More than one million people are arrested annually for driving while intoxicated, which is the third most commonly reported crime in the United States. Drinking and drugged driving is the number one cause of death, injury and disability of young people under the age of 21, and nearly 40% of all traffic fatalities are alcohol related. Every day 36 people die and approximately 700 are injured in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver. Drugs other than alcohol (e.g., marijuana and cocaine) are involved in about 18% of motor vehicle driver deaths, often in combination with alcohol.
• In 2007, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately one in eight weekend, nighttime drivers tested positive for illicit drugs. Moreover, approximately one in eight high school seniors responding to a 2010 study reported driving after smoking marijuana within two weeks prior to the survey interview.
• Many prescription drugs including opioid pain relievers and benzodiazepenes prescribed for anxiety or sleep disorders come with warnings against the operation of machinery – including motor vehicles – for a specified period of time after use. When prescription drugs are abused (taken without medical supervision), impaired driving and other harmful reactions become much more likely.
Rehabilitation Sought and Needed in and Around Ridgecrest
Addiction has continued to have a deadly and serious effect on the residents of Ridgecrest for some time now. In this city, it is most definitely not just the local addicts themselves that are afflicted and addicted. True enough, their family members and loved ones are also very adversely affected as a result of city-wide drug and alcohol abuse and addiction to drugs and alcohol. This is a sad and discouraging prospect to say the least but it nevertheless is very much so the truth of the matter. Ever since the turn of the century the drug problem in and around Ridgecrest has begun to steadily worsen time and time again and has seemed to show no real sign of getting any better any time soon.
Why has addiction gotten so bad in such a small, seemingly un-impinging or indifferent city as Ridgecrest? For one thing, this city is slowly filling up with middle class and upper middle class American families; these families now being the ones that are targeted by drug dealers and criminals the most by far. When it comes to drug and alcohol addiction, Ridgecrest has had it and is totally done with dealing with drug and alcohol addicts causing trouble and creating upset in and around the city.
There’s no doubt about it, substance abuse and addiction has surely and steadily grown in Ridgecrest and in some of the surrounding cities and towns too. What can honestly be done to prevent this problem from spreading further? Inpatient rehab centers are the answer here. With the help of inpatient rehab, it actually becomes possible for a drug or alcohol addiction to really be able to essentially drop their habit once and for all. Detox helps the physical; aspect of addiction, and rehab itself helps the mental aspect. With these both combined at an inpatient rehab center it is felt that they all will become respectful and truly appreciate the massive change that’s about to occur.