Alcohol Impaired Driving Deaths and the Religious Composition of U.S. Counties

Leah Drakeford

Alcohol impaired driving stands as a central public health issue in the US with far reaching impacts. Even though cultural factors such as religion have been extensively linked to alcohol little remains known about the link between religion and impaired driving, particularly with respect to religious context. This paper extends the literature regarding alcohol use and religion by examining the association between county religious composition and alcohol impaired driving deaths. Results indicate that Conservative and Mainline Protestantism are both inversely related to rate of alcohol impaired driving deaths. These findings highlight the role of cultural factors in influencing alcohol impaired driving and suggest that policy-makers should consider local area cultural factors when implementing strategies aimed at reducing alcohol impaired driving.

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 Presented in Session 5. Health & Mortality 1