SWOV Catalogus


How do zero tolerance drunk driving laws work?
C 29524 [electronic version only]
Carpenter, C.S.
Journal of Health Economics, Vol. 23 (2004), No. 1 (January), p. 61-83, 36 ref.

Samenvatting This paper provides the first comprehensive analysis of the effects of “ZeroTolerance” (ZT) Drunk Driving Laws — which set very low legal blood alcohol limits for individuals under age 21 — on self-reported alcohol use and drunk driving using data from the 1984 to 2001 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). I estimate two-way fixed effects models of alcohol-related behaviors of 18–20-year-olds that can condition on unobserved differences across states that may be correlated with determinants of drinking and drunk driving, and I use 22–24-year-olds as a control group. Results indicate that the laws reduced heavy episodic drinking (five or more drinks at one sitting) among underage males by 13%. This result is supported by models that use variation in treatment intensity induced by differences in body weight. I find mixed evidence of ZT effects for females, and no robust effects on drinking participation or drunk driving for either sex. (Author/publisher)
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