Citing thousands of preventable deaths and injuries each year in drunk driving accidents due to excessive alcohol consumption, New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio banned alcohol advertising on city property in April.
The ban, which applies to bus shelters, newsstands, Wi-Fi kiosks and recycling kiosks, will take effect as existing advertising contracts expire. City venues that are permitted to sell alcohol, such as stadiums and concert halls, are exempt.
The NYC injury attorneys at David Resnick & Associates have seen firsthand the devastation that alcohol abuse and drunk driving accidents cause New York families. We work every day to hold accountable those who cause alcohol-related injuries due to excessive drinking and disregard for the safety of others. We support common sense, prudent steps to reduce alcohol abuse and end alcohol-related accidents.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority banned alcohol advertisements on New York City buses, in subway cars and in stations in October 2017. Other cities, including Los Angeles, Philadelphia and San Francisco, have previously banned alcohol advertisements from city property.
It is well understood that excessive alcohol consumption causes a decrease in physical coordination and mental judgment that may lead to accidental injury or death. In our business as personal injury lawyers at David Resnick & Associates, we represent people in New York injured in accidents ranging from falls to car accidents to gunshot injuries that are related to excessive alcohol consumption.
Alcohol-Involved Accidents in New York City
Banning alcohol ads from city property “reaffirms our commitment to health equity and our stand to protect the well-being of all New Yorkers,” Mayor de Blasio says. He and other city officials say alcohol advertising leads to more drinking despite the fact that many New Yorkers struggle with serious alcohol issues involving excessive drinking.
City officials say there were 110,000 alcohol-related emergency room visits in New York City in 2016, and 2,000 people died that year because of alcohol-related causes, such as motor vehicle crashes and liver disease.
“In New York City, we see far too many deaths related to alcohol,” City Health Commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot said in a statement quoted by The Times. “We know exposure to alcohol advertising can lead to drinking more alcohol, more often behavior that can be harmful and even fatal.”
NYC Health Commissioners Warns Alcohol Advertising can lead to:
- The intention to use alcohol
- Problematic drinking
- Consumption of larger quantities of alcohol more frequently, particularly among young people.
Dr. Hillary Kunins, the acting executive deputy health commissioner, said that scientific studies in New York and other cities provide evidence of ad targeting to communities of color, which unfairly exposes black and Latino youth to the risks of drinking earlier.
In a December 2017 newsletter titled “Patterns of Alcohol-related Injuries among New York City Residents,” NYC Health said the most common accident injuries caused by alcohol use were:
- Motor vehicle-related
- Struck by / against.
More Statistics about Alcohol Injuries in NYC
- Nearly three-fourths of alcohol-related injuries seen at hospitals were unintentional (74 percent of emergency department (ED) visits and 71 percent of hospitalizations).
- One in five emergency room visits and one in nine hospitalizations for alcohol-related injuries were due to assaults.
- Two percent of ED visits and 9 percent of hospitalizations for alcohol-related injuries were due to self-inflicted injuries.
- The number of ED visits for alcohol-related injuries was highest around major holidays and holiday weekends.
- New Yorkers ages 45 to 64 years had the highest rates of alcohol-related injury ED visits and hospitalizations.
- Men had much higher rates of alcohol-related injury hospital visits and alcohol-related injury hospitalizations than women, accounting for 81 percent of ED visits and 77 percent of hospitalizations.
- Overall, poor neighborhoods had the highest rates of alcohol-related injury ED visits and hospitalizations.
The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism says about 88,000 people die from alcohol-related causes every year, making alcohol the third-leading preventable cause of death in the United States. Every day, 29 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired (drunk) driver, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The Alcohol Rehab Guide, a website produced by a company that owns a network of drug and alcohol addiction treatment facilities, says one-third of all traffic-related deaths involve alcohol, and drunk driving is the No. 1 cause of death among teenagers.
Other common injuries caused by alcohol use include falls (often causing head injuries and/or broken bones) and burns from fires (typically started by cigarettes). Alcohol also contributes to more cases of physical violence than any other illicit substance. More than 3 million alcohol-related incidents of criminal violence occur annually in the U.S. Rape, murder, assault, and child and spousal abuse are all closely linked to excessive drinking.
A Dissenting Voice on the Ban of Alcohol Ads on NYC Property
The Distilled Spirits Council, a Washington, D.C.-based group that represents the distilled spirits industry, criticized the ban on advertising alcohol on New York City property. In The Times, Jay Hibbard, vice president for government relations for the spirits council, cited a 2015 study from the University of Texas at Austin that found that advertising had little effect on alcohol consumption and more on brand choice.
Alcohol advertising is “a way to move people between brands and products. It encourages people to try different spirits that they may find attractive,” Hibbard said.
“Parents are the largest influence by far of whether people under 21 drink,” he said.
Kunins, the acting executive deputy health commissioner, was unmoved. “What underpins this executive order is a close review of the science,” she said. “The major studies show that exposure to alcohol advertising influences drinking, particularly in youth.”
If you or your loved one has been injured in an alcohol-related accident in New York City caused by someone else, you may be entitled to seek compensation for your injuries. Contact David Resnick & Associates for a free case review. A no-obligation consultation will help you understand your legal options so you can make a better-informed decision about how to proceed.