A new alcohol-related traffic law, a further reduction in traffic fatalities? Analyzing the case of Turkey


Nazif-Munoz J. I. , Anakök G. A. , Joseph J., Uprajhiya S. K. , Ouimet M. C.

Journal of safety research, vol.83, pp.195-203, 2022 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 83
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.jsr.2022.08.015
  • Journal Name: Journal of safety research
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, PASCAL, ABI/INFORM, EMBASE, Environment Index, MEDLINE, Psycinfo
  • Page Numbers: pp.195-203
  • Keywords: Alcohol related laws, Fixed effects, Policy evaluation, Time-series, Turkey
  • Kocaeli University Affiliated: Yes

Abstract

Copyright © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.BACKGROUND: In June 2013, an alcohol-related traffic law took effect in Turkey. The law 6487 introduced administrative fines for not respecting blood alcohol concentration limits, health warning messages on alcohol containers (bottles, cans), and prohibited the sale of alcohol beverages in retail facilities between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.. This article examines how this law is associated with traffic fatality variation. METHODS: Data from the Turkish Statistical Institute for the 2008-2019 period were analyzed. Outcomes were traffic fatality rates per 100,000 population and 10,000 motor vehicles. Exposure variable was the presence of law 6487. Alcohol, tobacco, and related beverages' household expenditure, unemployment rate, number of health professionals, number of crashes, and lags of the outcomes represented control variables. A time-series cross-regional fixed effect model was applied. RESULTS: Empirical estimates suggest that the law 6487 was associated with a reduction of 15% (Incidence Rate Ratio (IRR) 0.85, 95% Confidence Interval (CI): 082, 0.94) in the traffic fatality per population rate and with a reduction of 14% (IRR: 0.86 (95% CI: 0.78, 0.92) in the traffic fatality per motor-vehicle rate. After 6 years of its implementation, this intervention was associated with an absolute reduction of 1519 (95% reduction interval: 1177, 1810) traffic fatalities. CONCLUSIONS: Our research emphasizes that legislation with direct and indirect measures targeting driving under the influence of alcohol (DUIA) may be related to traffic fatalities reduction. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS: This finding has important implications for policy and future research in contexts in which alcohol consumption is low such is in Turkey. Future research should seek to identify mechanisms that explain how laws are ultimately associated with DUIA variation.