Alcohol prevalence, alcohol policies, and child fatal injury rates from motor vehicle crashes

Academic Article


  • In this study, we consider the effects of state alcohol policies on motor vehicle fatalities for children. While numerous studies have considered the effects of such policies on motor vehicle fatalities for the overall population, for teens, and for the elderly, their effects on fatalities among children in particular have not previously been studied. We use state-level cross-sectional time series data for 1982-2002. The dependent variable of interest is fatalities among child motor vehicle occupants (CMVO). Separate models are estimated for 0- to 4-yr-olds, 5- to 9-yr-olds, and 10- to 15-yr-olds, as well as for fatalities occurring during the day versus the night. We find that number of fatalities among CMVO is strongly correlated to alcohol use measured at the state level and that administrative license revocation policies and higher beer tax rates appear to consistently reduce such fatalities. For two of the three age groups, beer tax rates appear to reduce fatalities during the night rather than the day. However, zero tolerance and blood alcohol concentration limit laws do not seem to have any statistically significant effects on fatalities. © 2009 Western Economic Association International.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Sen B; Campbell CM
  • Start Page

  • 392
  • End Page

  • 405
  • Volume

  • 28
  • Issue

  • 3