Endogenous Drinking Age Laws and Highway Mortality Rates of Young Drivers
28 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 2000 Last revised: 27 Feb 2001
Date Written: July 1986
This paper presents estimates of the effects of the drinking age andbeer taxes on youth motor vehicle mortality. The data set employed is atime series, from 1975 to 1981, of cross sections of the 48 contiguous states.Separate regressions for 15 to 11 year olds, 18 to 20 year olds and21 to 24 year olds are presented. A simultaneous estimation model is usedto account for the endogeneity .of the drinking age. The results show thatduring the sample period an increase in the drinking age to 21, which isapproximately 8 percent, would have reduced mortality in the 18 to 20 yearold group by approximately 14 percent. Also a 100 percent increase in thereal beer tax, which is approximately $1.50 per case, would reduce highwaymortality of 18 to 20 year olds by about 19 percent. This increase in thebeer tax would also reduce mortality by about 8 percent for 15 to 17 yearolds and by about 18 percent for the 21 to 24 year olds.
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