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Does the minimum drinking age affect traffic fatalities?

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  • Peter Asch
  • David T. Levy
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    Abstract

    Since the mid-1970s numerous states have raised their minimum legal drinking age in an effort to reduce alcohol-related traffic accidents. This study examines determinants of a variety of traffic fatality rates at the state level for 1978, with particular attention to drinking age and drinking experience. The legal drinking age has no perceptible influence on fatalities, but inexperience in drinking is an apparent risk factor independent of age. The findings suggest that the effectiveness of higher drinking ages as a safety policy tool probably has been overstated.

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.2307/3324514
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

    Volume (Year): 6 (1987)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 180-192

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    Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:6:y:1987:i:2:p:180-192

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    Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/34787/home

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    Cited by:
    1. McCarthy, Patrick S., 1999. "Public policy and highway safety: a city-wide perspective," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 231-244, March.
    2. Steven D. Levitt & Jack Porter, 1999. "Estimating the Effect of Alcohol on Driver Risk Using Only Fatal Accident Statistics," NBER Working Papers 6944, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Thomas S. Dee & William N. Evans, 2001. "Teens and Traffic Safety," NBER Chapters, in: Risky Behavior among Youths: An Economic Analysis, pages 121-166 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Keeler, Theodore E., 1993. "Highway Safety, Economic Behavior, and Driving Environment," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt9c27z2z1, University of California Transportation Center.
    5. David J. Houston & Lilliard E. Richardson, Jr., 2006. "Reducing traffic fatalities in the American States by upgrading seat belt use laws to primary enforcement," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(3), pages 645-659.
    6. Blattenberger, Gail & Fowles, Richard & Loeb, Peter D., 2013. "Determinants of motor vehicle crash fatalities using Bayesian model selection methods," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 112-122.
    7. David N. Figlio, 1995. "The effect of drinking age laws and alcohol-related crashes: Time-series evidence from Wisconsin," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(4), pages 555-566.
    8. William N. Evans & Thomas S. Dee, 2001. "Behavior Policies and Teen Traffic Safety," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 91-96, May.
    9. Cropper, Maureen L. & Kopits, Elizabeth, 2005. "Why Have Traffic Fatalities Declined in Industrialized Countries' Implications for Pedestrians and Vehicle Occupants," Working paper 354, Regulation2point0.

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