Tonga increases drinking age from 18 to 21!

“The House was unanimous in their support of the Bill to Amend the Manufacture of Intoxicating Liquor Act to raise the drinking age from 18 to 21 years, with votes of 15-0.”

Cook Island News, 28 July 2014, Tonga raises drinking age

But in New Zealand (where the drinking age was lowered from 20 to 18 in 1999),
“A study found that after the drinking age was lowered to 18, there was a significant increase in traffic crashes among youth affected by the law change. The study found that the rate of traffic crashes and injuries to 18- to 19-year-old males increased 12 percent and increased 14 percent for males aged 15 to 17 comparing 4 years before and after New Zealand lowered the MLDA to 18. For females, the effect was even greater—rates increased 51 percent for 18- to 19-year-olds and 24 percent for 15- to 17-year-olds. The study estimated that 400 serious injuries and 12 deaths could be prevented each year among 15- to 19-year-olds if the nation raises the MLDA back to 21.”

“NHTSA estimates that minimum drinking age laws [in USA] have saved 26,333 lives since 1975 [till 2007 inclusive].” [In USA, the minimum age was increased to 21.]

Examination of the Criticisms of the Minimum Legal Drinking Age 21 Laws in the United States from a Traffic-Safety Perspective“, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Oct. 2008

NHTSA’s New Zealand source:
Am J Public Health. 2006 January; 96(1): 126–131. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2005.073122 PMCID: PMC1470436
Minimum Purchasing Age for Alcohol and Traffic Crash Injuries Among 15- to 19-Year-Olds in New Zealand
Kypros Kypri, PhD, Robert B. Voas, PhD, John D. Langley, PhD, Shaun C.R. Stephenson, BSc[Hons], Dorothy J. Begg, PhD, A. Scott Tippetts, MS, and Gabrielle S. Davie, MBios

“Several studies in the 1970s found that motor vehicle crashes increased significantly among teens when the MLDA was lowered.”
Australian Family Association, 21 Nov. 2011, Revisiting the minimum legal drinking age
AFA source: Shults RA, Elder RW, Sleet DA, Nichols JL, Alao MO, Carande-Kulis VG, Zaza S, Sosin DM, and Thompson RS. (2001) Reviews of evidence regarding interventions to reduce alcohol-impaired driving. American Journal of Preventative Medicine. 21(4 suppl 1): 66–88.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *