Monday, September 21, 2009

Any Drinking Raises Risk of Traffic Accidents, Researchers Say
September 17 2009
Research Summary

Even one or two alcoholic drinks can increase the risk of getting into an automobile accident, even if it's not technically drunk driving, according to Italian researchers.

Reuters reported Sept. 10 that individuals who consumed one or two drinks within 2-6 hours of driving more than doubled their risk of getting into an accident. Having more than two drinks tripled the risk of a crash.

Researcher Stefano Di Bartolomeo of the Università degli Studi di Udine and colleagues drew their conclusions from interviews of emergency-room patients who had been in car crashes; drivers were asked about their alcohol and food consumption prior to the crash, as well as how much sleep they had gotten.

The study also found that drinking combined with sleep depravation greatly increased the risk of a crash.

The study was published in the Sept. 1, 2009 issue of the journal BMC Public Health.

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