Lowering of the .08 Threshold Imminent?

SQ Attorneys

SQ Attorneys

Recently the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration commissioned a report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration asked the Academies to determine which strategies for reducing impaired driving have proven to be effective.

The report (a whopping 489 pages and written by a panel) made several recommendations, inclusive of a recommendation to lower impaired driving thresholds. The report calls for the lowering of state blood-alcohol concentration thresholds from 0.08 to 0.05. The report cites studies that show the United States lags behind other high-income countries in preventing impaired driving fatalities; more than 100 other countries have already adopted a .05 threshold.

Other proposals in the report recommend that states significantly increase alcohol taxes and make alcohol less conveniently available, including reducing the hours and days alcohol is sold in stores, bars and restaurants. It also recommends cracking down on sales to people under 21 years of age, or who are already intoxicated so as to discourage binge drinking, and putting limits on alcohol marketing while funding anti-alcohol campaigns similar to those against tobacco smoking.

From the early 1980s to the early 2000s, there was good progress in stemming impaired driving. Initiatives like increases in the drinking age to 21, and decreases in the blood-alcohol threshold moved the meter and impacted the number of impaired drivers on the road. However, since then progress has seemingly stagnated, and that has caused governmental concern around the country.

If you or a loved one is accused of DUI, you should immediately consult with a qualified Seattle DUI lawyer. A qualified and respected Seattle DUI lawyer, among other things, can quite possibly save the aggrieved person thousands of dollars in court and insurance fees, the extent of loss of privilege to drive, and the amount of jail time to be served. We have said it before and will say it again, Washington DUI laws are far too complicated for any ol’ attorney to handle. Be smart and consult with a qualified and skilled Seattle DUI attorney when arrested for an alcohol and/or drug related DUI in Washington State.

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