ALCOHOL AND HIGHWAY FATALITIES, A STUDY OF 961 FATALITIES IN NORTH CAROLINA DURING THE LAST SIX MONTHS OF 1970

All reports of fatal accidents (operators, passenger, pedestrians) in North Carolina during the second half of 1970 were reviewed with respect to involvement of alcohol. These reports were correlated with alcohol levels in blood samples. Overall findings: About half of the operators who died on the highway and about half of the pedestrians killed were tested for alcohol. More than half of these were found to be impaired. Only 7% of the surviving operators were tested, more than half of whom were found to be impaired. Of the 274 operators involved, 132 (almost half of those tested) had 0.15% BAC. Motor vehicle operators with this high amount probably have a drinking problem. WALLER noted a definite correlation between liver damage, poor driving records, high concentrations of blood alcohol, and operators killed in auto crashes. He also found a high correlation between two or more arrests involving drinking and an impression of problem drinking. The problem drinker is not often discovered. Information concerning the effect of drinking alcoholic beverage should be introduced into the educational system in the early grades. Better methods of controlling the distribution and consumption of liquor must be instituted. Any operator who has been arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or has survived a death-producing accident should be required to submit to a chemical test or lose the privilege or driving.

  • Corporate Authors:

    North Carolina Medical Society

    P.O. Box 27167
    Raleigh, NC  United States  27611
  • Authors:
    • McBay, A J
  • Publication Date: 1972-9

Media Info

  • Features: References; Tables;
  • Pagination: p. 769-773
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00260735
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Safety Council Safety Research Info Serv
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Nov 12 1974 12:00AM