A Review of Legislation Restricting the Intersection of Firearms and Alcohol in the U.S.

Carr, B. G., Porat, G., Wiebe, D. J., & Branas, C. C. (2010). A review of legislation restricting the intersection of firearms and alcohol in the USPublic Health Reports125(5), 674-679.


Objectives: In the United States, injury is a leading cause of alcohol-related death, and alcohol use is the leading risk factor for injury. We reviewed state and federal legislation regulating the intersection of alcohol and firearms.

Methods: We examined the current criminal codes of all 50 states and the District of Columbia using the databases Westlaw and LexisNexis to review restrictions on firearm use while intoxicated.

Results: We found three types of laws in 26 states that restrict firearm use by intoxicated people: sales or transfers are restricted in six states, carrying of concealed weapons is restricted in four states, and possession or discharge of a firearm while intoxicated is restricted in 20 states.

Conclusions: Regulation of the carrying and use of firearms by acutely intoxicated individuals may represent a public health opportunity to reduce firearm-related injury.