Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Colorado lawmakers consider lowering blood alcohol limit

In an effort to crack down on drunk drivers, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has recommended that states, including Colorado, pass laws lower the blood alcohol limit from .08 to .05 percent. The recommendation is also supported by safety groups such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving Lawyer.
Although many people believe that driving with a blood alcohol level of .05 percent is safe, the NTSB disagrees. The agency says thousands of lives per year could be saved if the United States joined other industrialized nations that have enacted lower blood alcohol levels into law.
Although the NTSB claims that lower blood alcohol limits save lives, not everyone is convinced. Rep. Dan Pabon, D-Denver, is among the skeptics. Pabon recently told CBS  News that he is open to having a conversation to determine whether the NTSB claims are true.
As the recommendation could lead to a loss of sales, the recommendation is also unsurprisingly opposed by restaurant groups in Colorado. According to the groups, if the new limit were put into place, a 120-pound woman could potentially reach the limit after one drink. Conversely, men weighing 160 pounds or less could face a DUI charge after having as few as two drinks.
In addition, many say that the law is unnecessary, as Colorado already has a law that addresses the issue. Under the law, if a driver is caught with a blood alcohol level between .05 and .08 percent, it can potentially lead to a DUI arrest, as the police can take it into consideration when determining whether the driver is impaired by alcohol. Currently, it appears that the measure has not gained much traction in the legislature.

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