Research & Resources

Motor vehicle crash fatalities and the effect of alcohol policies

Researchers sought to use crash data to understand how dangerous motor vehicle crashes are where drivers are under the legal blood alcohol limit of 0.08%; and, if and how state and local alcohol policies affect those drivers. They compared the number of crashes to how restrictive state alcohol policies were. They found that 15% of alcohol-involved crash fatalities and 6% of all crash fatalities had alcohol amounts below the legal limit. People in states with more restrictive alcohol policies were less likely to be victims of crashes involving alcohol, even those that were below the legal limit. The article, “Alcohol Policies and Motor Vehicle Crash Deaths Involving Blood Alcohol Concentrations Below 0.08,” was funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. It was published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine.
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