According to a study completed by the University of Florida, deaths from car accidents, truck accidents, and other traffic accidents decrease an average of 11% in areas where alcohol taxes are introduced. The overall death rate decreases by 35%, while violence decreased by 2% and crime reduces by 1.4% after the introduction of such taxes. The results of the study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, have stirred debate about the role of alcohol in traffic deaths.
According to Alexander Wagenaar and his colleagues at the University of Florida, who authored the study, there is a direct correlation between the cost of alcohol and the rate of drinking. When alcohol prices increased by 10%, drinking rates decrease approximately 5%. According to the Florida study, the higher the taxes on alcohol, the lower the rates of injury, death, drug use, risky sexual behavior, drunk driving, traffic accidents, violence, and crime. In fact, only suicide rates seemed unaffected when it came to fatalities potentially affected by alcohol.
According to the study’s authors, about 85,000 fatalities in the US each year are alcohol-related. While Florida drunk driving accidents are an obvious problem, the new study seems to suggest that simply increasing the price of alcohol can have a significant impact on traffic accident rates. Taxation can also be a more cost-effective solution than awareness campaigns. Taxes on alcohol can help communities raise money, while ad campaigns often require money. As well, alcohol taxes do seem to have a significant and measurable impact on reduced traffic fatalities.
Although the study focused on preventing traffic deaths, it stands to reason that an increase in Florida alcohol taxes can also help reduce Florida personal injury rates stemming from Florida pedestrian accidents, truck accidents, and other traffic accidents. While many truck accidents result in fatalities, many also result in long-term or permanent injuries, such as spinal cord injuries, brain trauma, burn injuries, amputations, and other injuries. These injuries are devastating and can result in a devastated life. Reducing the number of Florida drunk driving accidents can help reduce these injuries as well.
Of course, companies selling alcohol products note that alcohol taxes hurt business. As well, many consumers oppose the idea of alcohol taxes, arguing that people who drink responsibly are forced to pay more because of a few people who do drink and drive. It’s a difficult debate. On the one hand, increasing prices can help prevent accidents. On the other hand, it can also hurt business and cost customers who do drink responsibly.
If you have been injured in a Florida truck accident or a Florida drunk driving accident, contact the legal team at the Flaxman Law Group. The compassionate and experienced team at the Flaxman Law Group have successfully helped truck accident plaintiffs in Hollywood, Homestead, Coral Gables, Miami, and other south Florida communities. With expertise in Florida truck accidents, car accidents, spinal cord injuries, and many other practice areas, the team at the Flaxman Law Group has the qualifications and trial experience you may need. Contact the Flaxman Law Group today for a free, no-obligation consultation.