Effects of smoke-free laws on alcohol-related car crashes in California and New York: time series analyses from 1982 to 2008

Am J Public Health. 2013 Feb;103(2):214-20. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2012.300906. Epub 2012 Dec 13.


We examined effects of New York and California's statewide smoke-free restaurant and bar policies on alcohol-related car crash fatalities. We used an interrupted time-series design from 1982 to 2008, with 312 monthly observations, to examine the effect of each state's law on single-vehicle-nighttime crashes and crashes involving a driver with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 grams per deciliter or greater. Implementation of New York and California's statewide smoke-free policies was not associated with alcohol-related car crash fatalities. Additionally, analyses showed no effect of New York's smoke-free policy on alcohol-related car crash fatalities in communities along the Pennsylvania-New York border. Statewide smoke-free restaurant and bar laws do not appear to affect rates of alcohol-related car crashes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Traffic / statistics & numerical data*
  • Alcohol Drinking*
  • Automobile Driving*
  • California
  • Ethanol / blood
  • Humans
  • Models, Statistical
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • Restaurants / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Smoke-Free Policy / legislation & jurisprudence*


  • Ethanol