In which industries are Australian employees more likely to drink at levels that increase their long-term risk of alcohol-related disease or injury?

Australians employed in mining, construction, and utilities are the occupational groups most likely to drink at levels that increase their long-term risk of alcohol-related disease or injury. Those employed in healthcare and community services, and education and training are the least likely to do so.

18% of Australians employed in agriculture abstain from alcohol; 55% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 14% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 13% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 5%* of Australians working in mining abstain from alcohol; 58% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 16% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 21% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 14% of Australians employed in manufacturing abstain from alcohol; 58% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 15% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 13% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 11%* of Australians employed in utilities abstain from alcohol; 58% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 22% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 9%* drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 8% of Australians employed in construction abstain from alcohol; 56% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 20% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 15% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 7%* of Australians employed in wholesale abstain from alcohol; 66% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 19% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 8%* drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 12% of Australians employed in retail abstain from alcohol; 69% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 12% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 6% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 18% of Australians employed in hospitality abstain from alcohol; 59% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 15% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 9% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 14% of Australians employed in transport abstain from alcohol; 58% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 17% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 10% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 10% of Australians employed in media and telecommunications abstain from alcohol; 70% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 12% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 8%* drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 9% of Australians employed in finance abstain from alcohol; 71% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 14% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 7% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 8%* of Australians employed in real estate abstain from alcohol; 69% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 13% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 10%* drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 11% of Australians employed in professional, technical and scientific services abstain from alcohol; 69% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 15% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 4% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 12% of Australians employed in administrative services abstain from alcohol; 66% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 11% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 11% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 11% of Australians employed in public administration and safety abstain from alcohol; 65% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 14% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 9% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 12% of employed Australians employed in education and training abstain from alcohol; 73% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 11% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 5% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 13% of Australians employed in healthcare and community services abstain from alcohol; 74% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 9% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 4% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 8%* of Australians employed in arts and recreation abstain from alcohol; 67% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 13% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 12% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 16% of Australians employed in other industries abstain from alcohol; 58% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 15% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 11% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). * Estimate has a relative standard error of 25% to 50% and should be used with caution.

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Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). 2013 National Drug Strategy Household Survey (NCETA secondary analysis, 2015).

Please note: Some estimates may be unreliable due to small sample size. All measures of alcohol drinks refer to standard drinks.

Employed: Self-employed or working for salary or wages.

Long-Term Risk of Alcohol-Related Disease or Injury: Current Australian alcohol guidelines state that long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury increases when you consume an average of three or more standard drinks per day.

Standard Drink: A drink that contains 10 grams (or 12.5 millilitres) of alcohol.