A UCSD study has confirmed what all of us instinctively know – there is no amount of drinks (of the alcoholic kind) that can be considered safe when driving. The study examined data on 1.5 million fatal car accidents and revealed that alcohol was involved in approximately 34 percent of the accidents. The data allowed researchers to measure the number and severity of accidents involving alcohol starting with those found to have a .01 blood alcohol level. What the study found was not surprising: even drivers with a minimal amount of alcohol in their system are involved in more severe accidents than sober drivers. So-called “buzzed drivers tend to drive faster, are more likely to be improperly seat-belted and are more likely to be the striking vehicle in an accident when compared with non-drinking drivers.”
“Accidents are 36.6 percent more severe even when alcohol was barely detectable in a driver’s blood,” researchers said. Even with a BAC of 0.01, there are 4.33 serious injuries for every non-serious injury versus 3.17 for sober drivers.