LA JOLLA (CNS) - Traffic accidents are 36 percent more likely to involve deaths or severe injuries when even a small amount of alcohol is present in a driver's system, according to a UC San Diego study released Monday.
Researchers David Phillips and Kimberly Brewer looked at nearly 1.5 million fatal traffic accidents in the United States between 1994 and 2008 to arrive at the figure.
The legal limit for blood-alcohol content in California is 0.08 percent. However, in collisions in which a driver has just a 0.01 BAC, the ratio of people who suffer serious injuries to those who suffered less serious wounds was 4.33 to one, the researchers found. For sober drivers, the ratio was 3.17 to one.
"Compared with sober drivers, buzzed drivers are more likely to speed, more likely to be improperly seat-belted and more likely to drive the striking vehicle, all of which are associated with greater severity," Phillips said.
The severity of injuries increased with the blood-alcohol level, according to the authors, who said the findings held true even when factors such as fatigue and time of day were accounted for.
Phillips said he hope the results will convince legislators to lower the allowable blood-alcohol limit.
"Doing so is very likely to reduce incapacitating injuries and to save lives," Phillips said.
The research was published in the journal Addiction.
Hundreds of statewide faith leaders will march Saturday afternoon to the Otay Mesa Detention Center, where they will protest immigration policies that separated more than 2,300 children from their parents.
A 325-acre blaze burning at Camp Pendleton Saturday was described as a ``training fire'' by a base official.
The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in San Diego County dropped today for the 16th consecutive day, decreasing nine-tenths of a cent to $3.697.
A crash on an Oceanside freeway Saturday morning left two cars on their roofs and sent one person to a hospital, a fire official
Cooler weekend for the County due to a low pressure trough moving through the Great Basin. Weak and shallow marine layer may still be slow to clear.
A stretch of road in National City was shut down briefly after a large crowd took to the streets to celebrate the Mexico national soccer team's 2-1 victory over South Korea today in the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
The San Diego Humane Society today urged residents to volunteer their homes as foster spaces for the influx of animals typically lost after Fourth of July.
A man was critically injured Friday night when he chased a ball into the street and was hit by a car.
Clayton Richard pitched three-hit ball over six innings for his fourth consecutive win and the San Diego Padres beat the San Francisco Giants 6-2 on Friday night.
A powerful show of support for migrants being held in detention facilities has hundreds of interfaith leaders gathered Friday night for a vigil and demonstration at the border.