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December 21, 1940

THE EFFECT OF ALCOHOL ON DRIVING SKILL

Author Affiliations

Olive View, Calif.

JAMA. 1940;115(25):2198. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.02810510074026

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Abstract

To the Editor:—  The recent article "The Effect of Alcohol on Driving Skill" (The Journal, November 9, p. 1600) brings out a number of interesting facts but may lead to erroneous conclusions if not carefully scrutinized. An ingenious test of driving skill, including both steering and braking, showed that the two skills were more closely correlated than either or both with the exact concentration of alcohol in the blood stream. However, it should be noted that the subjects showed a remarkably similar concentration of alcohol in the blood after the test dose, in no instance varying by more than 0.03 per cent from the average concentration to be expected (chart 1) and almost all lying in the zone characterized by the committees of the American Medical Association and the National Safety Council, as well as most students of the subject, as of "suggestive" or "presumptive" rather than of "conclusive" or

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