Page last updated: June, 2016

International trends in alcohol and drug use among vehicle drivers

A CDC vital signs report, published 16 July compares the US record on fatal crashes to other high income countries.

Drunk driving contributed to more than 10,000 crash deaths in the US in 2013. According to the report, even when considering population size, miles travelled, and number of registered vehicles, the US consistently ranked poorly relative to other highincome countries for crash deaths.

The report identifies some of the policies and practices that influence rates of fatal crashes and that may account for the US performance relative to other countries including Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) level.

US, Canada and the United Kingdom define drunk driving as BAC levels at 0.08% or above; all other comparison countries • Use lower BAC levels (0.02-0.05%). • Use advanced engineering and technology, such as ignition interlocks for all people convicted of drunk driving and • Implement other proven measures, such as more use of publicised sobriety checkpoints and maintaining and enforcing the minimum legal drinking age.

The report highlights what actions Federal government and individual state governments, healthcare professionals and individuals can take to reduce vehicle crash deaths

All text and images © 2003 Alcohol In Moderation.