New York, USA: Plans to Reduce BAC Limit
A bill has been proposed in the New York state assembly and senate to reduce the Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) limit from the current 0.8% to 0.5%.
We recognize that .08 blood alcohol content is still too high, and other countries and states lowered it to .05 and so should New York.
There’s a big difference in cognitive abilities between .08 and .05, and this bill could save lives,” said New York State Senator John Liu, who’s sponsoring the bill in the Senate, as per lohud.
The bill which was proposed in January 2019 is currently pending in both houses for New York state. There are also active bills to do the same thing in California and Michigan. Utah was the first state in the US to adopt a .05 blood alcohol law in December 2018.
Big Alcohol lobbying against lowering BAC level
Big Alcohol front group American Beverage Institute (ABI) has issued a statement against the bill. ABI has been lobbying against the adoption of a similar bill in California as well.
ABI has been using misinformation tactics to undermine this life saving law. They have drawn focus on repeat offenders of driving under the influence, citing these offenders cause the majority of harm. They have undermined science claiming the BAC level of 0.05 may impair a driver but saying impairment is “relative”.
In its latest Global Alcohol Status Report, the World Health Organization (WHO) writes that alcohol impairs drivers’ sensory, motor and intellectual capabilities, particularly when BAC reach the 0.05% limit. The WHO Global Alcohol Strategy, adopted by all WHO member states in 2010, cites strong evidence in support of a low BAC limit (between 0.02% and 0.05%), and the majority of countries (70%) with an established limit set BAC levels at or below 0.05%.
A comprehensive review of the scientific studies on BAC limits showed that research indicates that virtually all drivers are impaired regarding at least some driving performance measures at a 0.05 BAC.
As Daily Breeze reports every 49 minutes a person is killed by an impaired driver in the United States. The US National Transport Safety Board (NTSB) says that approximately 1,500 lives could be saved each year if the BAC was lowered to 0.05 nationwide.