BACtrack® Consumption Report
For the first time ever, consumer Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) data is available for review and analysis. The data provides insight into alcohol consumption patterns around the nation.
Over 100,000 BAC test results were aggregated anonymously from users of BACtrack Mobile, BACtrack's award-winning smartphone breathalyzer. The data, collectively called the BACtrack Consumption Report, will be regularly updated and analyzed to provide insight into global drinking habits.
Explore our findings...
Late Night Drinking
- The average BAC result is 0.069%; the average Saturday BAC is 0.080%, which coincidentally is the legal driving limit in all 50 U.S. states.
- The highest average BAC in a specific hour window is 4 a.m. - 5 a.m. on Saturday, where users average 0.113%. The lowest is Tuesday 9 a.m. - 10 a.m. at 0.018%.
- Not surprisingly, the highest average BACs by day and week are Saturday and Sunday; more than 49% of users test over 0.10% BAC between 1 a.m. and 4 a.m.
- This data is in line with findings in a May 2013 New York Times article, which confirmed weekends are the most dangerous times on the roads for younger drivers, and that the drunkest drivers are on the road after midnight.
Working for the Weekend
- 40% of all BAC tests are performed during weekend hours.
- BACtrack users test around the clock; at least 1% of users have tested during any given hour/day period.
- Saturday from 10:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. is the golden hour: it’s the time with the highest BACtrack usage - 25% of BACtrack Mobile users have tested themselves or a friend at this time.
- Nearly half of BACtrack users have tested themselves at least once on a Saturday night between midnight and 4 a.m.
Average BACs and Usage Vary by the Day
Use the tools at the bottom to sort by Day, Average BAC, or by Usage.
- New Year’s Day had the single highest number of unique users and the greatest number of tests - nearly double that of any other day. The next highest day for number of tests: Christmas Day.
- The Top 5 highest average BACs this past year: Saturday, June 22 (.115% BAC), Saturday, July 27 (.097% BAC), Friday, Aug 9 (.097% BAC).
BACtrack helps users understand their level of intoxication and become more aware of their BAC levels.
- BAC levels for a user decline after 3 months of use. In the first 2-3 months, the average BAC is ~0.070%, and after 6 months, the average BAC is ~0.055%.
- Users may not be drinking less, but by the time they test, they have significantly lower BAC levels.
BACtrack users help their friends understand BAC levels.
- Approximately 15% of tests were taken by non-BACtrack Mobile owners - they were saved as a friend's test.
- BAC levels for friends’ tests are significantly higher than for owner tests (0.085% vs. 0.066%).
- This might suggest that regular BACtrack users are more aware than others of their BAC, and therefore, reach lower peak BAC levels.
Which Holidays Are Drinking Holidays?
- The highest average BAC days for U.S. drinkers: New Year’s Eve (0.095%), Super Bowl Sunday (0.087%), Valentine’s Day (0.081%) and Fourth of July (0.079%).
- New Year’s Eve 2013 was not the highest average single day for BAC; five other dates in 2013 hold the top five spots.
- Drinkers aren’t just stuffing themselves full of turkey: users had higher average BACs on Thanksgiving Day (0.064%) than for Christmas Day (.055%), Halloween (0.056%) and St. Patrick’s Day (.057%).
Average BACs and Usage Vary by the Day
- Thanksgiving Day usage peaks at 7 p.m., while New Year’s Eve usage dramatically increases after midnight.
- Valentine’s Day and Christmas Eve have users drinking earlier in the day than holidays like St. Patrick’s Day and the Fourth of July.
When was the big night to celebrate Halloween in 2013?
The data suggests it was the Saturday night before the big day.
View Average BACs by State
- Montana and South Dakota have the highest average BAC in the country, each with 0.010%. Rounding out the top ten are West Virginia (0.098%), Oklahoma (0.096%), Idaho (0.089%), Vermont (0.087%), Tennessee (0.087%) - and all with 0.086%, Wisconsin, Nevada and Massachusetts
- The five states with the lowest BAC are: New Hampshire (0.012%), Delaware (0.026%), Utah (0.031%), Arkansas (0.037%), and Wyoming (0.051%).
- Californians have lower average BACs than New Yorkers by 0.01%.
View Average BACs by City
- Dallas, TX, Oakland, CA, Scottsdale, AZ and Indianapolis, IN have the highest average BAC results (0.091-0.90% respectively), higher than Las Vegas, San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York City, NY.
- Houston, TX (0.034% BAC) and Columbia, SC (0.041% BAC) have two of the lowest averages.
- Users in Minneapolis, Denver, and Portland test themselves the most.
- While Los Angeles has roughly half as many users per capita as San Francisco, Los Angeles users are 40 percent more active, with 14 tests per user versus 10 per user for San Franciscans.
BACs Compared to DUI Rates and Alcohol Consumption Rates
Data for the BACtrack Consumption Report was collected anonymously from users of BACtrack Mobile. The data includes over 100,000 unique BAC tests performed by users over 12 months. BACtrack Mobile users are in over 35 countries and in all 50 U.S. states. Anonymous data is aggregated from users with data storage activated, location services turned on, and does not represent data from all users. Days in the "BAC by Weekday" chart are from 6:00 a.m. - 5:59 a.m.
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How A BACtrack Works
When alcohol is consumed, it is absorbed from the mouth, throat, stomach, and intestines into the bloodstream.
As blood flows through the lungs, alcohol in the bloodstream moves across the membranes of the lung’s air sacs (alveoli) into the air. The concentration of the alcohol in the alveolar air is directly related to the concentration of the alcohol in the blood. As the alveolar air is exhaled, the alcohol in it can be detected by the breath alcohol testing device.
BACtrack Mobile Breathalyzer
All data in this study was collected from the BACtrack Mobile Breathalyzer, a smartphone breathalyzer with police-grade Xtend® Fuel Cell Sensor Technology. When a user blows into BACtrack Mobile, BAC results are wirelessly transmitted via Bluetooth® to an iOS or Android device. With the free BACtrack companion app, a user can get more than a simple BAC result -- they can track, save and share BAC results, attach a note or photo to a result, and with BACtrack's ZeroLine® feature, get an estimate of when their BAC will return to 0.00%.
San Francisco-based BACtrack is the leader in breathalyzers, offering a full range of innovative products for both personal and professional use. Founded in 2001, BACtrack helps people monitor their blood alcohol content and make informed decisions about alcohol consumption. In April 2013, BACtrack launched BACtrack Mobile, the world's first smartphone breathalyzer that uses fuel cell sensor technology and Bluetooth connectivity and has since won Popular Science's 2013 'Best of What's New' Award for its innovation in health. BACtrack breathalyzers are available in 20 countries and at over 10,000 store locations including Walgreens, Costco, Best Buy, and Pep Boys. BACtrack products can also be purchased online at BACtrack.com, Amazon, Brookstone, drugstore.com and other locations. BACtrack products have been featured on Oprah's All Stars, The Dr.Phil Show, The Doctors, and MythBusters. Connect with BACtrack via Twitter and on Facebook. For more company information, explore our site, www.bactrack.com.