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FOR IMMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:
Lori Levy
Beer Institute
202-737-2337

BEER INDUSTRY DOES IT'S PART TO REDUCE HOLIDAY ACCIDENT TOLL
Takes To The Airwaves To Encourage Americans How To Have A Safe And Enjoyable Holiday

Washington, DC, August 27, 2001 - As the Labor Day weekend approaches, the Beer Institute urges Americans to enjoy the holiday and drink responsibly. For more than 20 years, the Beer Industry has promoted and supported local, regional and national programs designed to encourage the responsible consumption of its products.

"More than 112 million people over the age 21 have taken advantage of industry sponsored designed driver programs on holidays," said Jeff Becker, president of The Beer Institute.

The year 2001 marks the fifth consecutive year government studies show continued declines in drunk driving, underage drinking and teenage drunk driving fatalities.

"The Beer Industry is proud of its record in the fight against alcohol abuse. According to government studies, America has experienced nearly two decades of reductions in drunk driving and alcohol abuse," said Becker. In fact, much credit can be given to efforts generated by the Beer Industry's work with business associates, citizen groups, parents in prevention, treatment, education, research, outreach programs."

Facts About The Declines In Abuse Of Alcohol:

  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' National Household Survey of Drug Abuse (2000) says the number of teens (12-17) who reported drinking in the past 30 days has declined 47 percent since 1982.
  • College drinking, a major challenge for campus administrators and public policymakers, has also declined. The percentage of college freshmen that say they drink beer frequently or occasionally, was 34 percent lower in 2000 than the level reported in 1982.
  • According to studies, much of the credit for success comes from students as peer behavior has been determined to be one of the most powerful forces among students.
  • On our nation's highways, the number of fatalities in drunk driving crashes decreased 41% between 1982 and 1999 while the number of licensed drivers increased 25 percent during the same period.
  • Perhaps the greatest progress in the fight against drunk driving has been demonstrated among young people. Fatalities in crashes involving teenage drunk drivers (ages 16-20) decreased 64% between 1982 and 1999.

"As the summer comes to a close, the brewing industry remains committed to encouraging individual and community responsibility," Becker said. We are certainly not alone. Federal, state, and local government agencies have advanced various responsibility messages and numerous non-profit and private sector organizations have worked with brewers to combat illegal underage drinking, drunk driving, and various forms of alcohol abuse. We are confident that our efforts will help foster further declines in abuse and deter underage drinking and drunk driving."

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The Beer Institute, established in 1986, is the national trade association for the brewing industry. Representing both large and small brewers, as well as importers and industry suppliers. The Institute is committed to the development of sound public policy, the values of civic duty and personal responsibility.

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