Technical Report Documentation Page

1. Report No.

  DOT HS 809 756

2. Government Accession No.

3. Recipient’s Catalog No.

4. Title and Subtitle

State Laws and Practices for BAC Testing and Reporting Drivers Involved in Fatal Crashes

5. Report Date

March 2004

6. Performing Organization Code

7. Author(s)
James H. Hedlund, Robert G. Ulmer and Veronika Shabanova Northrup

8. Performing Organization Report No.

9. Performing Organization Name and Address

Preusser Research Group, Inc.
7100 Main Street Trumbull, CT 06611

10. Work Unit No. (TRAIS)

11. Contract or Grant No.

12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address

Department of Transportation
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Washington, DC 20590

13. Type of Report and Period Covered

 Final Report
May 2002- October 2003

14. Sponsoring Agency Code

15. Supplementary Notes

 Valerie Gompf and Dale Doucet served as the NHTSA Contracting Officer’s Technical Representatives for this study

16. Abstract

 This report presents the results of a study of alcohol testing and reporting methods and rates for drivers involved in fatal traffic crashes. In 2002, NHTSA’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) annual report data file recorded BACs for 65 percent of fatally injured drivers, 25 percent of surviving drivers, and 43 percent of all drivers in fatal crashes. The study’s goals were to identify the best practices for, and the barriers and problems that hinder, obtaining BAC data for drivers involved in fatal traffic crashes. The study reviewed each State’s laws affecting BAC testing, recent testing rates, and other information on each State’s practices and results. With the advice of a steering committee representing the organizations and disciplines involved in BAC testing and reporting, ten diverse States were chosen for detailed examination. This report identifies the best practices currently in use and the major barriers to increasing testing. It concludes with suggestions for implementing these best practices in States that wish to improve their BAC testing and reporting rates.

17. Key Words

  Fatal crashes; alcohol testing; best practices, BAC, impaired driving

18. Distribution Statement

  Document is available to the public through the
National Technical Information Service, Springfield, Virginia 22161

19. Security Classif. (Of this report)

20. Security Classif. (Of this page)

21. No. of Pages

22. Price

Form DOT F 1700.7 (8-72 Reproduction of completed page authorized