When you think of cities that go hard, you probably think of New York City or Las Vegas. After all, they're the cities that never sleep, right?
Well, new data shared with Refinery29 finds that there may be some truth to that stereotype – at least if blood alcohol content is any indication.
Alcomate, one of the country's leading makers of breathalyzers, sent five people to three of the most popular clubs in 33 major cities across the U.S. The teams in each city measured blood alcohol content (BAC) of 1000 people on Friday and Saturday nights between 8pm and 2pm.
They then averaged everyone's BAC to see which cities are drinking the most. These are the top 10:
Miami - .251
Las Vegas - .250
Austin - .243
Chicago - .233
Milwaukee - .231
Minneapolis - .212
New York - .199
Nashville - .183
Philadelphia - .176
Boston - .156
As expected, both New York and Las Vegas made it into the top 10, but so did more surprising cities like Milwaukee. There were, of course, plenty of drunken stories from the people taking BAC data outside these clubs, but the funniest stories actually come from the people who weren't as drunk as they thought, a representative for Alcomate told Refinery29. And the team on the street made sure that anyone too wasted to drive made it home safely by calling cabs, holding onto keys and even recommending places for people to eat while they sobered up.
While these numbers can be fun to look at, the truth is that a majority of people who blew into the breathalyzers over the six nights wrapped up into these averages were seriously intoxicated.
A BAC of about 0.2 or higher is considered severe impairment, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, and can cause problems like vomiting, loss of speech, loss of consciousness, and blackouts. Reaching a 0.3 is life-threatening.
It's fun to kick back and have a few drinks with friends, but only if you're careful to avoid alcohol poisoning like this. Alcomate suggest getting your own breathalyzer, since even people who thought they were sober had BACs above the legal driving limit (0.8).
"Blowing before you drive will let you know if you need that extra 15 minutes to sober up," the representative said. "And in the big scheme of things, saving $10,000 in DUI fees is worth the time." So. True.