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MADD, AMA, NTSB, IIHS and Others Launch Support 21 Coalition
Date:10/9/2007

Overwhelming Research in Support of 21 Minimum Legal Drinking Age Law's Lifesaving Impact--Young Lives Protected, Roadways Safer

WASHINGTON, Oct. 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the American Medical Association (AMA), the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) today announced the formation of Support 21, a coalition of leading health and safety groups in support of the 21 Minimum Legal Drinking Age Law (21 Law). The 21 Law is one of the most studied and successful alcohol-related laws on the books. Since states began setting the legal drinking age to 21, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates nearly 25,000 lives have been saved.

MADD convened this group of stakeholders from science, medical and public health organizations committed to the vigorous support for the science and effectiveness of the 21 Law, to detail the overwhelming research that proves the lifesaving benefits of the law.

"Science speaks for itself. When the legal drinking age is 21, lives are saved and injuries are prevented," said Glynn Birch, national president of MADD. "The 21 Law saves lives on the road and keeps countless youth from starting to drink at early ages. The earlier a youth begins drinking alcohol, the more likely they are to become alcohol dependent, binge drink and to drive drunk later in life."

There have been almost 50 peer-reviewed studies that specifically looked at the effect of the 21 Law on traffic fatalities. Each one of them found that an increased drinking age significantly lowers alcohol-related fatalities. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) looked at over 50 studies from states and countries that changed their drinking ages. They found that increasing the drinking age decreases fatalities and crashes by 16 percent and that lowering drinking ages increases fatalities and crashes by 10 percent.
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SOURCE Mothers Against Drunk Driving
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