Drinking-Driving Attitudes, Knowledge and Behavior: An Analysis of the First Two Telephone Surveys of the Fairfax Alcohol Safety Action Project

Report No: 77-R2

Published in 1976

About the report:

The first two telephone surveys for the Fairfax ASAP were conducted during June and December of 1975. During each, 500 ASAP area residents randomly selected from the Northern Virginia phone book were called and were interviewed using a standard questionnaire. The sample was stratified by sex and partially age. Differences between survey results were examined through the analysis of individual items and through the construction of four composite scales. The variables measured by these scales included alcohol experience, alcohol awareness, attitudes toward coping with drunk driving, and alcohol-related behavior. The two sets of survey respondents were similar in their demographic characteristics, their previous experience with alcohol, and their alcohol behavior. The groups were not significantly different in their overall alcohol awareness, although there was a slight decline in this scale across time and a marked decline in some individual items, such as specific awareness of the ASAP. There were also significant declines in positive attitudes toward handling drinking drivers. While these differences may be somewhat seasonal, the tentative conclusions of this analysis are twofold. First, there is no evidence that the Fairfax public information and education countermeasure has been successful in disseminating information on the existence of the ASAP locally or in improving support for countermeasure activities. Additionally, there is no evidence that the national campaigns have been effective with the main thrust of the campaigns, that is, changing attitudes toward bystander intervention in drunk driving.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


  • Cheryl W. Lynn

Last updated: January 28, 2024

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