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Fewer Teens Drinking And Driving In Oregon

OPB | Oct. 2, 2012 2:26 p.m. | Updated: June 7, 2013 10:22 a.m.

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Drinking and driving among Oregon teenagers has been dropping.  But though the numbers have improved here, apparently not as much as the national average.  

A new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not include Western states.  But it found that the number of teenagers who drove after drinking, decreased by 54 percent between 1991 and 2011. CDC director, Thomas Frieden, cites several reasons.

Frieden explained, “Every state in the country now has a zero tolerance law, that was not the law 20 years ago. The legal drinking age is now 21 in every state in the country, and that was not always the case.”  

Frieden says the spread of special laws for new drivers — those that delay teens from chauffeuring friends or driving at night —  have also been very effective. Frieden says more people recognize that having ‘one for the road’ is no longer acceptable. 

Forty-one states contributed to the CDC study. Oregon lost the funding to take part. But the “Oregon Healthy Teen Survey” found a 15 percent drop over ten years in drinking and driving

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