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NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

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NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Old 05-14-13, 09:59 PM
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NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/14/us/nts...html?hpt=hp_t1
Washington (CNN) -- A common benchmark in the United States for determining when a driver is legally drunk is not doing enough to prevent alcohol-related crashes that kill about 10,000 people each year and should be made more restrictive, transportation safety investigators say.
The National Transportation Safety Board recommended on Tuesday that all 50 states adopt a blood-alcohol content (BAC) cutoff of 0.05 compared to the 0.08 standard on the books today and used by law enforcement and the courts to prosecute drunk driving.
"Most Americans think that we've solved the problem of impaired driving, but in fact, it's still a national epidemic," NTSB Chairman Deborah Hersman said.
The idea for a tighter standard is part of a safety board initiative outlined in a staff report and approved by the panel to eventually eliminate drunk driving, which accounts for about a third of all road deaths in the United States.
NTSB looks to technology to end drunken driving in the U.S.
Hersman said progress has been made over the years to reduce drunk driving, including a range of federal and state policies, tougher law enforcement, and stronger advocacy. But she said too many people are still dying on America's roads.
The board acknowledged that there was "no silver bullet," but that more action is needed at the federal and state levels.
"In the last 30 years, more than 440,000 people have perished in this country due to alcohol-impaired driving. What will be our legacy 30 years from now?" Hersman asked. "If we don't tackle alcohol-impaired driving now, when will we find the will to do so?"
Lowering the rate to 0.05 would save about 500 to 800 lives annually, the safety board said.
...
What do you think? We haven't had a good drunk driving thread in a while.
My opinion is that .08 was to low a limit. .05 is ridiculous.
Old 05-14-13, 10:03 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

*still working on the joke about "BAC", "joe", "blow", and "69"*
Old 05-14-13, 10:05 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Originally Posted by X View Post
*still working on the joke about "BAC", "joe", "blow", and "69"*
You can't judge someone's BAC that way, I've tried.
Old 05-14-13, 10:16 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Good. Now if they would just put all the idiots who drink and drive in jail for extended periods of time.
Old 05-14-13, 10:23 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

I know a lot of people who go to Phoenix's "Tent City" over DUI charges. So much so that it seems kind of normal.

Because I'm a loner, I've never been in the situation. But it seems like if you plan on having anything more than one drink, you really shouldn't immediately drive. Ever. Is there a statistic that 70% of people on weekends, after midnight, are drunk driving? All it takes is for the cop to pull you over and get you in trouble.

I dunno. Just another problem for you normal folks to deal with.
Old 05-14-13, 10:40 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

It's this (when it eventually passes), then it will drop to around .02 after that. Then it will be you have to blow before you can even start your car. Much like no more smoking at restaurants, there will be no more drinking at a restaurant either because one puts you over the limit.
To inject some fun in to the thread any guesses on what year it will be when blowers will be required in all new cars sold? I'm going to say 2020. It will be introduced in the next couple years but take the government 5 years to get it done.
Old 05-14-13, 10:42 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

I don't understand how it would save lives? Are they saying people now get pulled over with a BAC under.08 and get let go and then proceed to kill somebody?

How would lowering it prevent any deaths?
Old 05-14-13, 10:45 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

I guess what I'd like to know, is if they have any data showing that a significant number of deaths are due to drivers in the .05-.08 range. My understanding was that most deaths were caused by people well over that.

The article says it would save 500-800 lives annually, but doesn't say where it got that figure.
Old 05-14-13, 10:47 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Isn't that like a sip of beer?
Old 05-14-13, 10:48 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

If they're solely interested in saving lives, just lower all the speed limits while they're at it.

Also, I question the 500-800 figure. The drunk driving deaths that typically make the local news seem to be at least .1 and above. .05 is probably the equivalent of 1 drink for a typical woman and 2 for a man.
Old 05-14-13, 10:48 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

You could probably save 500-800 lives a year by having people wear helmets while crossing the street.
Old 05-14-13, 10:48 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Originally Posted by Timber View Post
I don't understand how it would save lives? Are they saying people now get pulled over with a BAC under.08 and get let go and then proceed to kill somebody?

How would lowering it prevent any deaths?
Agreed. If they really want to stop a traffic death epidimic, they need to figure out a way to stop all the texting and driving.

It used to be when I saw someone swerving I'd think "oh he's drunk" now it's more the case of "oh he's on his cell phone".
Old 05-14-13, 10:49 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Originally Posted by joeblow69 View Post
I guess what I'd like to know, is if they have any data showing that a significant number of deaths are due to drivers in the .05-.08 range. My understanding was that most deaths were caused by people well over that.

The article says it would save 500-800 lives annually, but doesn't say where it got that figure.
Exactly. I don't buy it either.
Old 05-14-13, 10:53 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Way too low, and .08 is way too low as well. No, I don't drive drunk, and I have never had a DUI.
Old 05-14-13, 10:53 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

How about removing the limit altogether and implementing a minimum 5 years for being drunk and involved in an accident, and required stickers on the vehicle to notify other motorists this vehicle's driver was guilty of an alcohol-related incident...and to take caution.

If someone is injured...10 years. If someone dies...20 years+ whatever a jury wants.

If we get only 10 people in prison for this very basic law, with no exceptions, we'd see fewer deaths and I'm sure the critics would scratch their heads at the no legal limit and why the sudden decrease.

Remove the limit. More serious punishment. Let people decide their own fate.
Old 05-14-13, 11:01 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Ah, I did find this:
http://www.centurycouncil.org/drunk-...nal-statistics
In 2010, 70% of drivers involved in drunk driving fatalities had a a BAC level of .15 or higher – a trend that has remained relatively unchanged for more than a decade. (Source: NHTSA/FARS, 2012)
they need to figure out how to get these guys off the road
Old 05-14-13, 11:03 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Originally Posted by joeblow69 View Post
Ah, I did find this:
http://www.centurycouncil.org/drunk-...nal-statistics

they need to figure out how to get these guys off the road
So this .05 is just an insurance money grab?
Old 05-14-13, 11:10 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

BAC limits around the world

http://chartsbin.com/view/2037
Old 05-14-13, 11:41 PM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

How do you have less than zero?
Old 05-15-13, 12:08 AM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

^ Muslim countries. If you even think about drinking, they'll throw you in jail.
Old 05-15-13, 02:17 AM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

Originally Posted by Geofferson View Post
If they're solely interested in saving lives, just lower all the speed limits while they're at it.

Also, I question the 500-800 figure. The drunk driving deaths that typically make the local news seem to be at least .1 and above. .05 is probably the equivalent of 1 drink for a typical woman and 2 for a man.
It's not quite that bad. 2 drinks for a 180lb man in a minute will only put you at 0.045. In an hour, it's only 0.028. At my weight (210), I can have 3 12 oz beers in an hour and still be under .05.

In Canada, we have a legal limit of 0.08, but we also have a warning limit of 0.05. At the warning limit, you get a penalty, including a temporary license suspension, based on the number of priors:

First Time
3-day licence suspension
$150 Administrative Monetary Penalty

Second Time (within 5 years)
7-day licence suspension
Mandatory alcohol education program
$150 Administrative Monetary Penalty

Third Time (within 5 years)
30-day licence suspension
Mandatory alcohol treatment program
Six-month ignition interlock licence condition
$150 Administrative Monetary Penalty

Subsequent infractions (within 5 years)
30-day licence suspension
Mandatory alcohol treatment program
Six-month ignition interlock licence condition
Mandatory medical evaluation
$150 Administrative Monetary Penalty
Old 05-15-13, 02:36 AM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

The thing is this is ALL about money. DUI's are huge money makers for all involved. There is a reason why LE agencies all over the country are shutting down special units (gang, DARE, CRASH, etc.) and beefing up traffic and especially DUI units and it's not safety. The average first time (non-accident) DUI will cost you more than $10,000.00 when it is all said and done and no one will ever complain because who will ever say they feel bad for drunk drivers. It's bullshit because stopping a property or violent crime doesn't (really) pay.
Old 05-15-13, 03:54 AM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

I would be OK with the lower limit if there were two levels of punishment. Maybe a $100 fine for 0.05 to under 0.08, and DUI for 0.08 and over?

But to call somebody at 0.05 as dangerous as somebody at 0.15 or 0.20 is ludicrous.
Old 05-15-13, 04:08 AM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

I don't really know what the numbers mean. I understand the level, but haven't ever tested my BAC after a beer, or 2, or 3 to fully understand at what point I end up at .79, etc. I would really like to do that so that I could understand the argument better.
Old 05-15-13, 04:14 AM
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Re: NTSB Recommends Lowering Legal Limit To 0.05

There are all sorts of studies out now that texting while driving is much more dangerous that driving with a .08 BAC, so why are people so intent on vilifying drunk drivers and accepting thousands of dollars in fines and jail time when a first time texting offended may only get less than a $100 citation?

I know the answer but it is interesting to think about.

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