coroners reports for fatalities in road accidents have provided information on the levels of drinking amongst different road users before and after the introduction of the road safety act of 1967. factors considered in a five year study include the age of the driver, the time of year, time of day and day of week, and road users other than drivers, namely pedal cyclists, passengers and pedestrians. prior to the act in 1966/67, 37 per cent of driver fatalities had been drinking and 25 per cent exceeded the level which was to become the legal limit. these proportions decreased immediately after the introduction of legislation to 26 per cent and 15 per cent respectively, but in the subsequent years to 1971 returned to the pre-legislation values. there were marked age differences in the level of drinking and the effects of the act, drivers in the 20-29 age group having the highest proportions exceeding the legal limit in most recent years. proportions of driver fatalities exceeding the limit were highest in the hours between 10p.m. and 4a.m., particularly on saturday nights. although the act did not apply to road users other than drivers, there were reductions in the level of drinking amongst passengers and pedal cyclists, though not amongst pedestrians. (a)

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