Dry Law for Drunk Drivers: The Impact of Alcohol-Related Laws on Car Accident Mortality Rates

Micaela Sviatschi, Universidad de San Andres

This paper studies the effect of a law that prohibits the sale of alcohol at night for convenience stores and gas stations (usually called dry law) on car accident mortality rates. The analysis exploits the fact that each province decided to pass the law at different points in time. This observed variation in the implementation of the law across time and space provides a potential instrument to identify the causal effect of alcohol restriction in car accident mortality rates using the panel nature of the data. After controlling for province and year fixed effects, I found that the dry law is associated with reduction of 14 percent in car accident fatalities. This result is especially important in the case of Argentina where 8,000 people die annually in car accidents and where 37 percent of these deaths are caused by alcohol abuse.

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Presented in Poster Session 4