Drinking and Driving in Puerto Rico
Background: Epidemiological information is lacking for driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) in Puerto Rico. Objectives: To examine the prevalence and correlates of DUI in Puerto Rico. Methods: Data are from a household sample of 1510 individuals, aged 18–64 years in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The response rate was 83%. Results: The rate of 12 month self-reported DUI was 20% among men and 8% among women (p < 0.001). Twelve month DUI arrests were reported by 0.1% of men and 0.2% of women (p: ns) while lifetime arrests were reported by 6% of men and 0.7% of women (p < 0.001). Adjusted analyses showed that the number of hours of daily driving (OR = 1.08, 95% CI = 1.01–1.17; p < 0.05), male gender (OR = 1.66, 95% CI = 1.07–2.58; p < 0.01), having more liberal drinking norms (OR = 4.81; 95% CI = 2.61–8.84; p < 0.01) and more positive attitudes towards drinking (OR = 4.58; 95% CI = 1.28–16.31; p < 0.01), consuming a higher number of weekly drinks (OR = 1.05; 95% CI: 1.03–1.07; p < 0.001), and binge drinking (OR = 2.60; 95% CI = 1.62–4.16; p < 0.001) were factors of risk for self-reporting DUI. A lifetime arrest was associated with being separated or divorced (OR = 2.7; 95% CI = 1.04–7.36; p < 0.05), male gender (OR = 5.25; 95% CI = 1.93–14.26; p < 0.001), more liberal drinking norms (OR = 6.97; 95% CI = 2.37–20.48; p < 0.001), and illicit drug use (OR = 2.82; 95% CI = 1.25–6.35; p < 0.001). Conclusions: The prevalence of self-reported DUI in San Juan, Puerto Rico was high, but the proportion of people arrested for DUI in a span of 12 months or during their lifetime was low. Stricter enforcement of DUI laws may be necessary to minimize DUI in urban Puerto Rico.
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