Car crashes are the leading cause of death for teens, and about a quarter of those crashes involve an underage drinking driver. In 2018, 24% of young drivers 15 to 20 years old who were killed in crashes had BACs of .01 g/dL or higher.
To reduce alcohol-related fatal crashes among youth, all states have adopted a minimum legal drinking age of 21. NHTSA estimates that minimum-drinking-age laws have saved 31,959 lives from 1975 to 2017.
Yet in 2018 the highest percentage of drunk drivers (with BACs of .08 g/dL or higher) were 21- to 24-year-olds, at 27%, followed by 25- to 34-year-olds, at 26%. Men are most likely to be involved in this type of crash, with 4 male drunk drivers for every female drunk driver.