Alcohol causes a quarter of Europe road deaths

December 15, 2012

Alcohol abuse is responsible for around a quarter of the 30,000 people who die in road accidents across the European Union every year, the bloc's drugs agency said in a report published on Friday.

"Around 30,000 people die in in the EU every year, with alcohol still the number one substance endangering lives on Europes roads," the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction said.

It said alcohol accounted for around a quarter of road deaths.

The Lisbon-based agency was presenting the results of its Driving under the influence of drugs, alcohol and medicines (DRUID project), which ran between 2006 and 2011.

The survey randomly tested drivers across 13 member EU countries. "Alcohol was detected in 3.5 percent of drivers, in 1.9 percent and medicines in 1.4 percent." EMCDDA said.

"The DRUID project has given policymakers the best available scientific evidence on levels of drug and alcohol use in drivers and the responses available today to improve road safety in Europe," EMCDDA director Wolfgang Goetz said.

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