NTSB Press Release

National Transportation Safety Board
Office of Public Affairs

NTSB Issues Recommendations to Reduce Impaired Driving

November 23

The NTSB announced several recommendations today as part of a continuing emphasis on the issue of substance-impaired driving, which is the biggest killer on our roadways. The recommendations focus on three areas: better alcohol testing, better drug testing and identifying the "place of last drink."

Although over 10,000 lives are lost each year in substance impaired driving crashes, some states provide little or no data to the national calculation. Further, while there is significant evidence that illegal drugs, over-the-counter and prescription medications are playing a greater role in roadway crashes, there are no standards or testing criteria for these substances. To address these shortcomings, the NTSB recommends that states develop better blood alcohol concentration testing and reporting guidelines; agree on a common standard of practice for drug toxicology testing; and increase their collection, documentation and reporting of test results.

The collection of place of last drink (POLD) data could focus training and enforcement actions on establishments that are serving under-age or intoxicated patrons. By collecting information on POLD, law enforcement officers provide a way to target establishments for effective interventions.

"Better data leads to better interventions and results in more lives saved," said Deborah A.P. Hersman, chairman of the NTSB. "Collecting information on the "place of last drink" can serve as an incentive for alcohol-serving establishments to better train their employees in recognizing under-age or intoxicated patrons."

Substance-Impaired Driving is one of 10 issues on the NTSB's Most Wanted List.

Links to the safety recommendations are provided below.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

45 states, Puerto Rico and DC.

Alaska, Maine, Montana, Nebraska and New Mexico

International Association of Chiefs of Police and the National Sheriff's Association

NTSB Media Contact:
Office of Public Affairs
490 L'Enfant Plaza, SW
Washington, DC 20594
(202) 314-6100
Peter Knudson



The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent federal agency charged with determining the probable cause
of transportation accidents, promoting transportation safety, and assisting victims of transportation accidents and their families.