You've heard how drunken people survive horrific accidents that should've killed them. But it's not just folk belief - scientists revealed that the higher the blood-alcohol level, the higher the chance of survival after a serious injury:
"After an injury, if you are intoxicated there seems to be a pretty substantial protective effect," said Lee Friedman, the author of the study and an assistant professor of environmental and occupational health sciences at UIC, in a statment issued by the school. "The more alcohol you have in your system, the more the protective effect." [...]
Friedman analyzed all 190,612 patients treated at Illinois' trauma centers between 1995 and 2009 who were tested for blood-alcohol content, with levels ranging from zero to 0.5 percent at time of admission. (Blood-alcohol levels above about 0.35 percent can be fatal.) He found that with the exception of burn injuries, the mortality rates of all types of traumatic injury decreased as the blood-alcohol content of victims rose.
The conventional wisdom is that drunk people are more limp and relaxed during the accident, but Friedman's results showed that's not the case. Eli MacKinnon of LiveScience has the explanation: Link