Application of 0.05 per cent legal blood alcohol limits to traffic injury control in Bangkok

Suriyawongpaisal, P.; Plitapolkarnpim, A.; Tawonwanchai, A.

Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand 85(4): 496-501


ISSN/ISBN: 0125-2208
PMID: 12118498
Document Number: 1395
A substantial proportion (44%) of traffic injury cases seeking emergency services in public hospitals had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.1 per cent or more. To reduce alcohol related traffic injuries and deaths, a law was enacted setting a criminal per se legal blood alcohol limit at 0.05 per cent in 1994. However, not until 1997, was an active public education program undertaken on a national scale to raise awareness against drink driving and to support law enforcement. This includes dissemination of knowledge through multiple channels e.g., roadside posters; stickers on the back of vehicles; sporadic radio and TV programs or spots; public announcements; press reports. In 1999, highly visible sobriety check points were set up as a measure for law enforcement. In order to systematically assess the campaign, multiple methods were used to collect relevant data. This report focused on the outcomes of the campaign based on hospital surveillance data in the emergency rooms of 4 public hospitals from March to November, 2000 on alternate months. It was found that the campaign succeeded in raising public awareness and support for law enforcement against drink driving. However, the proportion of road victims with illegal BAC seeking emergency care did not decline after 17 months of the campaign. Limitations and weaknesses of law enforcement activities were discussed along with recommendation for future action.

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Application of 0.05 per cent legal blood alcohol limits to traffic injury control in Bangkok