Home > Publications . Search All . Browse All . Country . Browse PSC Pubs . PSC Report Series

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Seefeldt says 'consumption smoothing' behavior makes long-term recovery more difficult for economically vulnerable

Seefeldt criticizes Kansas legislation restricting daily cash withdrawals from public assistance funds

Prescott says sex offender registries may increase recidivism by making offender re-assimilation impossible

Highlights

Elizabeth Bruch wins Robert Merton Prize for paper in analytic sociology

Elizabeth Bruch wins ASA award for paper in mathematical sociology

Spring 2015 PSC newletter available now

Formal demography workshop and conference at UC Berkeley, August 17-21

Next Brown Bag

PSC Brown Bags will be back fall 2015


The fatal toll of driving to drink: The effect of minimum legal drinking age evasion on traffic fatalities

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Lovenheim, Michael, and Joel Slemrod. 2010. "The fatal toll of driving to drink: The effect of minimum legal drinking age evasion on traffic fatalities." Journal of Health Economics, 29(1): 62-77.

There is a sizeable literature on the effect of minimum legal drinking age (MLDA) restrictions on teenage drunk driving. This paper adds to the literature by examining the effect of MLDA evasion across states with different alcohol restrictions. Using state-of-the-art GIS software and micro-data on fatal vehicle accidents from 1977 to 2002, we find that in counties within 25 miles of a lower-MLDA jurisdiction, a legal restriction on drinking does not reduce youth involvement in fatal accidents and, for 18 and 19-year-old drivers, fatal accident involvement actually increases. Farther from such a border, we find results consistent with the previous literature that MLDA restrictions are effective in reducing accident fatalities. The estimates imply that, of the total reduction in teenager-involved fatalities due to the equalization of state MLDAs at 21 in the 1970s and 1980s, for 18-year olds between a quarter and a third and for 19-year olds over 15 percent was due to equalization. Furthermore, the effect of changes in the MLDA is quite heterogeneous with respect to the fraction of a state's population that need not travel far to cross a border to evade its MLDA. Our results imply the effect of lowering the MLDA in select states, such as has been proposed in Vermont, could lead to sizeable increases in teenage involvement in fatal accidents due to evasion of local alcohol restrictions. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

DOI:10.1016/j.jhealeco.2009.10.001 (Full Text)

Country of focus: United States of America.

Browse | Search : All Pubs | Next