COLLEGE PARK, Md., June 4 (UPI) — U.S. researchers warn college student drinking and driving worsens at age 21.
Researchers at Center on Young Adult Health and Development at the University of Maryland School of Public Health in College Park say not only is drinking and driving a continuing public-health concern, but contrary to popular belief, alcohol-related driving risk-taking actually increased as college students got older.
Also, males were more likely to engage in these behaviors than females.
The study, scheduled to be published in the August issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, indicates the prevalence and frequency of alcohol-related traffic-risk behaviors worsened when students turned age 21. Increased availability of alcohol was associated with a greater level of problems.
“Our findings call into question the assertions of some advocates who claim that lowering the drinking age to 18 would be a useful strategy for reducing harm associated with alcohol consumption,” corresponding author Amelia Arria said in a statement.
Arria and colleagues interviewed 645 female and 608 male students annually for four years to determine frequencies of riding with a driver who was under the influence of alcohol, driving after drinking any alcohol and driving while intoxicated.
Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.