Transportation Equity Act: Adopting a Statewide Open Container Law in Missouri
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According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 1,232 fatal vehicle crashes occurredin 2003 on Missouri's highways. Approximately 41 percent of these fatalities involved alcohol. These incidents cost Missouri $4.74 billion in lost productivity, medical costs, property damage, and other direct expenditures. Improvements in traffic safety are reflected in a change in fatality rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled (VMT). Missouri's alcohol-related fatality rate was 0.74 in 2003, compared to the national average of 0.59. The lowest rate was Utah at 0.19 and highest was Montana at 1.18 (Figure 1). Though the alcohol related fatality rate has decreased (Figure 2), some suggest that adopting a statewide open container law would further reduce the traffic fatality rate in Missouri.
Roberts, J. (2005). Transportation Equity Act: Adopting a Statewide Open Container Law in Missouri. Report 29-2005. Retrieved 09-24-09, from University of Missouri Columbia, Institute of Public Policy Web site: http://www. truman.missouri.edu/ipp/