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17 Binge drinking and drunk driving among current drinkers in Thailand
  1. Polathep Vichitkunakorn1,
  2. Utcharee Intusoma2,
  3. Sawitri Assanangkornchai3
  1. 1Department of Family and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai, Thailand
  2. 2Division of Neurology, Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai, Thailand
  3. 3Department of Epidemiology, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai, Thailand

Abstract

Background and aims Rate of road traffic injury in Thailand is highest among ASEAN countries. Binge drinking rapidly raises a drinker’s blood alcohol level and impairs driving ability. This study aimed to evaluate the association between binge drinking and drunk driving among Thai population.

Method Data in 2007, 2011, 2014, and 2017 of Thai National surveys on Tobacco and Alcohol Consumption were analyzed. The household surveys collected information from the population aged over 15 years using a face-to-face interview. To evaluate the association between binge drinking and drunk driving, covariates including gender, marital status, education level, household income level, living area, region, smoking, binge drinking, and age-period-cohort effect were adjusted in a multivariate analysis.

Results There were 94,165 current drinkers from the four waves of survey. The binge drinking accounted for 17.3%, 17.8%, 44.9%, and 42.8% of the current drinkers in 2007, 2011, 2014 and 2017, respectively. The prevalence of the drunk driving also increased from 36.6% to 57.7% over the 10-year-period. Both occasional binge drinkers and regular binge drinkers showed about twice a risk of drunk driving (odds ratios range from 1.86 to 2.93) compared with the non-binge drinkers, and these odds ratio increased by drinking frequency. Factors associated with binge drinking included male, adolescent, not married, living in rural areas, and smoking.

Conclusion Binge drinking at any frequency was associated with an increased probability of drunk driving.

Learning outcome This study found that binge drinking, at any frequency, was associated with an increased probability of drunk driving.

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