WASHINGTON, DC — The World Spirits Alliance, representing major distillers and suppliers of fine spirits from around the globe, today marked World Health Day’s focus on road safety by reaffirming the industry’s longstanding commitment to fighting drunk driving. “Around the world, spirits distillers provide substantial financial support to many social responsibility organizations to ensure the fight against drunk driving continues in a sustained and effective way,” said Distilled Spirits Council President Peter Cressy, pointing to the efforts of the Portman Group (www.portman-group.org.uk) in London, The Century Council (www.centurycouncil.org) in Washington, D.C., and the Amsterdam Group (www.amsterdamgroup.org) in Brussels. U.S. Efforts To Stop Drunk Driving “The U.S. spirits industry is adamantly opposed to drunk driving and has long been engaged in the fight against it. As the World Health Organization kicks-off its yearlong campaign to promote traffic safety, the nation’s distillers will continue to work aggressively to address this issue year after year,” said Cressy. Cressy stated the United States has made great progress in reducing alcohol-related fatalities over the last 20 years. According to the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration, since 1982 the total number of alcohol-related traffic fatalities declined 33 percent, while the number of youth under 21 alcohol-related traffic fatalities fell 55 percent. “While the long-term decline in drunk driving is encouraging, to make further progress we must focus our efforts on the main source of the problem – the hardcore drunk driver,” said Cressy noting that 58 percent of alcohol-related traffic fatalities involve drivers with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .15 or above. Cressy stated for more than six decades the U.S. distilled spirits industry has work with local, state and national traffic safety leaders to develop new and innovative strategies designed to reduce drunk driving. “From funding the development of the breathalyzer in the 1940’s, to forming an historic partnership with MADD in 2001 to push for comprehensive drunk driving laws, the spirits industry has and will continue to do its part to rid our roads of drunk drivers,” Cressy concluded.