DWI Prevention: Profiles of Drinkers Who Serve as Designated Drivers

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This study was designed to profile drinkers who serve as designated drivers (DDs) and to determine if drinkers who are at risk for driving while intoxicated (DWI) serve as DDs. Bivariate and logistic regression analyses on data from 1,393 computer-assisted telephone interviews (CATIs) and 913 barroom surveys showed that DDs, relative to non-DDs, tend to be at-risk, heavier drinkers. Logistic regression using CATI data showed that DDs were more often heavy drinkers and reported higher levels of driving after drinking and riding with intoxicated drivers (RID). Logistic regression using barroom data showed that DDs reported more driving after drinking, in spite of drinking less often outside the home. DDs were also much more likely to have used a DD. These findings are consistent with those from several related studies that showed that drinkers who used DDs or free safe (taxi) rides tended to be heavier drinkers who reported more DWI and RID (B. D. Caudill, W. M. Harding, & B. Moore, in press-a, in press-b). Future research may benefit from examining why at-risk drinkers take steps to avoid DWI on some occasions but not others.

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