"Alcohol abuse is a leading risk factor for unintentional injuries. A previous topical report, Establishing a Relationship Between Alcohol and Casualties of Fire (Vol. 3, Issue 3), demonstrated a connection between the involvement of alcohol and fire fatalities. The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) collects alcohol use data as part of its ongoing injury surveillance system. Since 1991, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety began recording blood alcohol levels (BALs) for all unintentional injury deaths. The purpose was to learn more about the nature and extent of the alcohol problem as it relates to injuries, including fire deaths. The MDH Report of Injury form includes a variable on alcohol use before the injury. Autopsies are performed on all fire fatalities and BALs are recorded. (The legal limit for intoxication in the State of Minnesota is 0.1 percent BAL.) Quantitative data from the State of Minnesota were used for this topical report to assess the impact of alcohol on fire fatalities. This case study is useful for understanding the scope, magnitude, and circumstances of the relationship between alcohol and unintentional injuries, especially fire fatalities."
U.S. Fire Administration: http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/
Topical Fire Report Series (July 2003), v.3 no.4