IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/ucp/jpolec/v109y2001i6p1198-1237.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

How Dangerous Are Drinking Drivers?

Author

Listed:
  • Steven D. Levitt
  • Jack Porter

Abstract

We present a methodology for measuring the risks posed by drinking drivers that relies solely on readily available data on fatal crashes. The key to our identification strategy is a hidden richness inherent in two-car crashes. Drivers with alcohol in their blood are seven times more likely to cause a fatal crash; legally drunk drivers pose a risk 13 times greater than sober drivers. The externality per mile driven by a drunk driver is at least 30 cents. At current enforcement rates the punishment per arrest for drunk driving that internalizes this externality would be equivalent to a fine of $8,000.

Suggested Citation

  • Steven D. Levitt & Jack Porter, 2001. "How Dangerous Are Drinking Drivers?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(6), pages 1198-1237, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:v:109:y:2001:i:6:p:1198-1237
    DOI: 10.1086/323281
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/323281
    File Function: main text
    Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1086/323281?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ruhm, Christopher J., 1996. "Alcohol policies and highway vehicle fatalities," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 435-454, August.
    2. Chaloupka, Frank J & Saffer, Henry & Grossman, Michael, 1993. "Alcohol-Control Policies and Motor-Vehicle Fatalities," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(1), pages 161-186, January.
    3. Saffer, Henry & Grossman, Michael, 1987. "Drinking Age Laws and Highway Mortality Rates: Cause and Effect," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 25(3), pages 403-417, July.
    4. James J. Heckman, 2000. "Causal Parameters and Policy Analysis in Economics: A Twentieth Century Retrospective," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(1), pages 45-97.
    5. Flinn, C. & Heckman, J., 1982. "New methods for analyzing structural models of labor force dynamics," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 115-168, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. 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.
    2. Cook, Philip J. & Moore, Michael J., 2000. "Alcohol," Handbook of Health Economics, in: A. J. Culyer & J. P. Newhouse (ed.), Handbook of Health Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 30, pages 1629-1673, Elsevier.
    3. Benson, Bruce L. & Rasmussen, David W. & Mast, Brent D., 1999. "Deterring drunk driving fatalities: an economics of crime perspective1," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 205-225, June.
    4. Vinish Shrestha, 2015. "Estimating the Price Elasticity of Demand for Different Levels of Alcohol Consumption among Young Adults," American Journal of Health Economics, MIT Press, vol. 1(2), pages 224-254, Spring.
    5. Baughman, Reagan & Conlin, Michael & Dickert-Conlin, Stacy & Pepper, John, 2001. "Slippery when wet: the effects of local alcohol access laws on highway safety," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(6), pages 1089-1096, November.
    6. Jeffrey Linkenbach & Douglas J. Young, 2012. "Accounting for Changes in Alcohol Use and Abuse in the United States," SAGE Open, , vol. 2(3), pages 21582440124, September.
    7. David Roodman, 2020. "The impacts of alcohol taxes: A replication review," Papers 2007.10270, arXiv.org.
    8. Farrell, Susan & Manning, Willard G. & Finch, Michael D., 2003. "Alcohol dependence and the price of alcoholic beverages," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 117-147, January.
    9. Bruce L. Benson, 2007. "Private Policing And Private Roads: A Coasian Approach To Drunk‐Driving Policy," Economic Affairs, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(4), pages 30-38, December.
    10. Bisakha Sen & Christine M. Campbell, 2010. "Alcohol Prevalence, Alcohol Policies, And Child Fatal Injury Rates From Motor Vehicle Crashes," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 28(3), pages 392-405, July.
    11. Erik Nesson & Vinish Shrestha, 2021. "The effects of false identification laws on underage alcohol‐related traffic fatalities," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(9), pages 2264-2283, September.
    12. French, Michael T. & Gumus, Gulcin & Homer, Jenny F., 2009. "Public policies and motorcycle safety," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 831-838, July.
    13. Steven D. Levitt, 2008. "Evidence that Seat Belts Are as Effective as Child Safety Seats in Preventing Death for Children Aged Two and Up," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(1), pages 158-163, February.
    14. Steven D. Levitt & Jack Porter, 2001. "Sample Selection In The Estimation Of Air Bag And Seat Belt Effectiveness," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(4), pages 603-615, November.
    15. Ruhm, Christopher J., 1996. "Alcohol policies and highway vehicle fatalities," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 435-454, August.
    16. Daniel Eisenberg, 2003. "Evaluating the effectiveness of policies related to drunk driving," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(2), pages 249-274.
    17. Nejat Anbarci & Monica Escaleras & Charles Register, 2005. "Income, Income Inequality and the “Hidden Epidemic” of Traffic Fatalities," Working Papers 05002, Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University, revised Aug 2006.
    18. Yung-Hsiang Ying & Chin-Chih Wu & Koyin Chang, 2013. "The Effectiveness of Drinking and Driving Policies for Different Alcohol-Related Fatalities: A Quantile Regression Analysis," IJERPH, MDPI, vol. 10(10), pages 1-17, September.
    19. Michael Morrisey & David Grabowski, 2011. "Gas prices, beer taxes and GDL programmes: effects on auto fatalities among young adults in the US," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(25), pages 3645-3654.
    20. Anderson, D. Mark & Rees, Daniel I., 2015. "Per se drugged driving laws and traffic fatalities," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 122-134.

    More about this item

    Lists

    This item is featured on the following reading lists, Wikipedia, or ReplicationWiki pages:
    1. How Dangerous Are Drinking Drivers? (JPE 2001) in ReplicationWiki
    2. Economic Logic blog

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:v:109:y:2001:i:6:p:1198-1237. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Journals Division (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.