As if you needed more reason not to drink and drive, I’ll point you to one particularly sobering study conducted last year by University of California-San Diego researchers. Using the official U.S. Fatality Analysis Reporting System database to look at 570,731 fatal car crashes between 1994 and 2011, researchers determined that even “buzzed drivers”—with a blood alcohol content level of 0.01 percent—are still 46 percent more likely to be blamed for a car-on-car collision than the other, sober driver:
There appears to be no safe combination of drinking and driving—even minimally ‘buzzed’ drivers pose increased risk to themselves and to others. Concerns about drunk driving should also be extended to ‘buzzed’ driving. US legislators should reduce the legal BAC limit, perhaps to 0.05%, as in most European countries. Lowering the legal BAC limit is likely to reduce injuries and save lives.
So please, everyone, make it your New Year’s Eve resolution to take a cab home. Drunk driving is a huge risk, in more than one way. —Max Ufberg