Buzzed: Montana is the 5th Drunkest State in the Country
Not a top 5 to be proud of, but Montana has the 5th highest alcohol consumption (per capita) in America.
Believe it or not, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) sets a national 'goal' for per capita alcohol consumption. Currently, that goal is 2.1 gallons or less per year. That goal was set to bring awareness to alcohol abuse and drunk driving related incidents.
Montana came in 5th with an average of 3.11 gallons consumed per capita. Only nine states glugged less than the national goal. Not surprisingly, Utah has the lowest number...with just 1.34 gallons consumed annually per capita. (Everyone knows that Utah has fairly strict alcohol laws.)
INTERESTINGLY - several states with the SMALLEST populations have the HIGHEST consumption rates. Take a look below...it's sort of creepy.
The top 10 states for alcohol consumption (according to the NIAAA) are as follows:
- New Hampshire (4.76 gallons, population 1.36 million)
- Delaware (3.72 gallons, population approx. 974,000)
- Nevada (3.46 gallons, population 3.08 million)
- North Dakota (3.26 gallons, population approx. 762,000)
- Montana (3.11 gallons, population 1.07 million)
- Vermont (3.08 gallons, population approx. 624,000)
- Wisconsin (2.98 gallons, population 5.8 million)
- Alaska (2.94 gallons, population approx. 732,000)
- Idaho (2.92 gallons, population 1.8 million)
- South Dakota (2.87 gallons, population approx. 885,000)
In Montana, no store that sells alcohol of any kind (beer and wine included) can sell it between 2am and 8am by state law. Although places to buy booze are plentiful, you can't buy distilled spirits in convenience stores or grocery stores...just beer and wine products.
The Montana laws have set Blood Alcohol Content limits for "driving under the influence" as 0.08% for adults 21 years of age or older and 0.04% for commercials drivers. Above those levels is considered under the influence. It's also illegal to operate a watercraft under the influence, FYI.