This is the second report of the National Alcohol Indicators Project (NAIP). The aim of NAIP is to monitor and report on trends in alcohol-related and alcohol-caused harm in Australia, at national, state and local levels. The NAIP is a collaborative project between the National Drug Research Institute (Curtin University of Technology) and Turning Point Alcohol and Drug Centre Inc. and is funded by the National Drug Strategy.
This report documents trends in alcohol and non-alcohol related serious road injuries (SRIs), including fatalities and hospitalisations, between 1990 and 1997 for all Australian states and territories. It also provides estimates of the proportions of all fatally injured drivers and pedestrians that were alcohol-related and provides age and sex profiles for alcohol and non-alcohol involved serious road injuries. Such estimates have not previously been published for all Australian jurisdictions.
Alcohol is a major cause of road injury in Australia. Using aetiologic fraction methodology, it was estimated that in 1997, high-risk drinking caused 418 road deaths and 7,789 hospitalisations (Chikritzhs et al., 1999). The average cost of a single road fatality or hospitalisation in Australia has been estimated at about $750,000 and $132,000 respectively, resulting in a total of over $1.3 billion for 1997.