Drug Testing News BLOG

The rule of thumb is to never drink when you're driving or drive when you're drinking. But a new analysis by a non-profit organization showed highway accidents do not make up most of the deaths associated with underage drinking.

According to the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), only 32 percent of all deaths related to underage drinking involved traffic accidents; the remaining 68 percent have been associated with homicides, suicides, alcohol poisoning, and other causes of death.

MADD used 2010 data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to understand the different and more prominent causes of deaths among underage drinkers and find possible ways to minimize these risks.

"These data show that taking away the keys truly does not take away all of the risks when it comes to underage drinking," MADD National President Jan Withers said in a news release. "MADD hopes this information will inspire parents to have ongoing conversations with their kids about the dangers of drinking alcohol before age 21, especially since we know that a majority of kids say their parents are the biggest influence on their decisions about alcohol."

For more than 30 years, MADD has been at the forefront of stopping drunk driving, supporting the victims of this violent crime, and preventing underage drinking. The organization, together with the National Presenting Sponsor Nationwide Insurance,  launched the Power Talk 21 campaign -- the national day, observed on April 21, for parents to start talking with their kids about the perils of irresponsible use of alcohol and plans to detect alcohol abuse.