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Map: The West is home to some of the highest alcohol poisoning death rates

Alcohol poisoning death rate, by state. (CDC)

An average of 2,221 people — likely an underestimate — die every year of  alcohol poisoning, with the rate of such deaths highest by far in Alaska, according to a new government report.

The states with the highest alcohol poisoning death rates are concentrated largely in the West, with New Mexico, Arizona and Wyoming claiming the second- , fourth- and fifth-highest death rates. (Rhode Island was third.) All told, an average of six people die daily from alcohol poisoning, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported  Tuesday. And, as The Post’s Lenny Bernstein reports, the deaths do not all involve binge-drinking college kids:

In fact, according to the report, 76 percent of them are aged 35 to 64, and three of every four are men. Their deaths are largely tied to binge-drinking, with those episodes averaging a staggering eight drinks per binge. That level of consumption soaks drinkers’ brains in enough alcohol to affect mechanisms that control breathing, heart rate and body temperature, and sometimes causes death, the report found.

Alcohol poisoning death rates varied greatly at the high end. In Alaska, the rate was 46.5 deaths per million people over age 15, based on death certificate data from 2010 to 2012. It was 32.7 in New Mexico and 22.8 in Rhode Island. But the alcohol poisoning death rate was less than 10 deaths per million people in 33 states.

Read Bernstein’s story for more on the report, including breakdowns by age, race and gender.