You may already have heard that drunk drivers are more likely to live through a car crash than the sober people they hit. This is often attributed to the fact that a drunk person may be more limp in the vehicle, so his or her body absorbs the crash better and the person does not get injured as badly.

A researcher who studied this does agree that drunk people are more likely to live, but disagrees that it’s because of being limp during the crash. He says that data shows that the drunk people aren’t less injured than the sober people, they’re just more likely to live through the same injuries that would kill a sober person.

Furthermore, as blood alcohol concentration increases, the survival odds also increase. He discovered this by looking at the records for 190,612 patients who ended up at a trauma center and got BAC testing from 1995 to 2009.

His data also goes beyond car accidents. Though burn injuries were the outlier, most other injuries followed the same trend. Puncture wounds were impacted the most, showing the greatest increase in survival. Those who had consumed the most alcohol saw their fatality rates nearly cut in half.

He noted that injures themselves don’t take lives. The physiological response that comes after an injury — like fluid loss and inflammation often leads to death. Two other big factors are heart failure and kidney failure. He says that since alcohol increases myocardial contractility, it helps to protect these issues, so those who have been drinking are more likely to live.

If you’ve been involved in a car accident with a drunk driver, what this all means is that you could be more severely injured than the person who caused the accident, and loved ones with you in the car could be more likely to pass away. You must know what rights you have to compensation in Atlanta when this happens.

Source: Live Science, “Drunks More Likely to Survive Injuries, Study Suggests,” Eli MacKinnon, accessed Oct. 21, 2016