The Goal: Zero Alcohol-Related Driving Deaths

May 15, 2013

  • May 15, 2013 at 12:22 pm
    Excitebiker says:
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    Rah, Rah, Go Team! Go Police State! Bigger Jails! More Crimes! Stricter Punishments! Lower thresholds! More Police checkpoints! “Passive ambient detection devices”!

    Hey, why not just go Full Prohibition? We need more Wars on Nouns in this country. War on Alcohol, anyone? I know the private prisons are on board! Let’s get a 30-year mandatory minimum law passed in all 50 states for possession of illegal booze.

    • May 15, 2013 at 12:40 pm
      Excitebiker says:
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      I guess an actual productive comment is in order… People with 0.05 BAC are not the problem. You can have a glass of wine at dinner and blow a 0.08. Heck, I wouldn’t be surprised if consumption of bread yeast is enough to blow 0.05.

      The real problem is the big number of drunks out there that drink a bottle of liquor or an 18 pack of beer and then get behind the wheel with BACs of 0.15, 0.25, even 0.30+– and they do it again and again. We have all seen the news stories like “person with 8x prior DWIs that caused a fatal crash with a BAC of 0.30.” Those drivers are a menace and a danger to us all. Lumping a 0.05 “one drink with dinner” responsible driver into the same group as a chronic and severe drunk driver does a disservice to us all.

      • May 15, 2013 at 1:36 pm
        Anonyman says:
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        False, in some states such as Florida in some cases the limits are so low that they are effectively instituting a total ban. This can be seen in the constantly changing terms such as DWI,DWAI,DUI,etc since the drive is no longer “intoxicated” and even stretching the word to it’s limits wasn’t being swallowed by the populace. An attempt to completely eliminate deaths would result in a total police state yet a complete failure to eliminate anything.

    • May 15, 2013 at 1:59 pm
      Anejo says:
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      I’ll drink to that.

  • May 15, 2013 at 1:15 pm
    youngin' says:
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    Sigh. I hate government more and more every year.

    • May 15, 2013 at 5:12 pm
      tim says:
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      I think its the neo-prohibitionists that are getting their way. I agree with the opinion above that states the problem is the repeat high-blood-alcohol folks that are the problem.

    • May 16, 2013 at 9:34 am
      ralph says:
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      Watch it…They’ll sic the IRS on you.

  • May 15, 2013 at 1:47 pm
    Dave says:
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    A laudable but impossible goal. And like so many other things government does wrong they are getting this totally wrong. The problem does not lie with those who blow 0.08. And lowering the threshhold to 0.05 wont’t help either. The problem rests first with those who blow 0.15, 0.30, 0.40 and higher, and second with repeat offenders. How often do you read stories where the drunk who caused the accident which killed somebody had been arrested for and convicted of drunk driving on several previous occassions. The problem is not with the person who goes to a party, ballgame or entertains clients and blows 0.08 or 0.09. It’s with the chronic drunk who blows well over 0.20 and has lost his license on several occasions but still chooses to drive drunk. Go after those people, put them in jail after the 3rd or 4th offense and then you can begin to solve the problem.

  • May 15, 2013 at 1:57 pm
    Tighter laws says:
    Hot debate. What do you think?
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    I agree with the other comments the problem is not the occasional drinker but the true drunks. Now if we really want to solve a problem why do we not do a behind the wheel exam for anyone over 70, that would eliminate the little old lady who came at me head on this morning.

  • May 15, 2013 at 2:11 pm
    Original Bob says:
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    Drunk, buzzed, medicated, distracted, texting, eating, smoking, reading the paper etc… – all causes of serious auto accidents – Can’t wait until the driveless cars arrive in 2023, until then be sure to drive defensively or move to Mackinaw Island.

    • May 15, 2013 at 2:44 pm
      Dave says:
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      I love Mackinaw Island.

  • May 15, 2013 at 2:58 pm
    youngin' says:
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    Yeah, seriously. WTH is taking so long with the driverless cars already?

  • May 15, 2013 at 3:56 pm
    reality bites says:
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    This is easier than you think to accomplish.

    Outlaw driving. Or outlaw drivers. There are already outlaw bikers on TV with their own reality show. You don’t see them getting behind a wheel after they crank up the meth. Handlebars, yes, but they’re big boys and can handle bars better than most.

    Can I go home now?

  • May 15, 2013 at 4:36 pm
    Rebecca says:
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    outlaw alcohol. It is in fact the gateway drug. Legalize kinnikinnick, it is much safer.

  • May 16, 2013 at 3:47 am
    Olusegun Longe (Lagos Nigeria) says:
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    Every reasonable government of every Nation should ban drinking and driving, should also impose maximum punishment on culprits

    • May 17, 2013 at 7:22 pm
      Nigeria? says:
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      Thought all you guys did was ask for money.

      • May 20, 2013 at 12:54 pm
        Libby says:
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        Only the Nigerian princes and kings…

  • May 16, 2013 at 9:34 am
    Libby says:
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    I don’t know what to say that hasn’t already been said, but how about making transportation more available to the drinking crowd? I know where I live, there is no taxi service. So unless we get a DD (good luck with that!) we just stay home and drink.

    • May 17, 2013 at 8:14 am
      jw says:
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      I actually prefer to be the DD with my friends. I remember everything the next day. Telling people what they did the night before can be so much fun.

    • May 22, 2013 at 2:03 pm
      bangersandmash says:
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      Well independent cabs would solve the problem as people surely would look for ways to make money offering a cheap and safe ride home, but cabs control the politicians and cab medallions cost a million dollars. Ridiculous, andother government/union sham.

  • May 16, 2013 at 11:01 am
    JustTheFacts says:
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    I must start out by stating, that AMAZINGLY, the neo-prohibitionists at MADD do not support this. Confusing, yet funny, at the same time. MADD’s mission is to eliminate all driving after drinking yet no support. What’s up their sleeve?

    Let’s start with the FACTS as reported by law enforcement to the NHTSA and shown in the NHTSA FARS database in 2011 – ftp://ftp.nhtsa.dot.gov/FARS/ . In 2011 in the ENTIRE US, how many DRIVERS were involved in multi-vehicle crashes INVOLVING A FATALITY? Answer: 37,863 DRIVERS. How many SOBER DRIVERS under the current per se limit of .08 were there in that population? Answer: 35,710 = 95%. Of the 5% of DRIVERS that were over the per se limit, how many were EXTREMELY INTOXICATED – ABOVE .12? Answer: 80%.

    So the statistics show that DRIVERS above .12 are doing the majority of killing on the roadways annually in the US. As is typical, this article reports on resulting deaths – INCLUDING NON DRIVERS – in supporting the position we need to be at .05 BAC for DRIVERS. Interesting. Laws are passed and charges filed are against DRIVERS. The numbers reported to the NHTSA clearly show less than 1,750 DRIVERS (5%) were involved in multi-vehicle crashes INVOLVING A FATALITY where the DRIVER was EXTREMELY intoxicated.

    The conclusion as has been shown per the NHTSA FARS database is that SOBER inattentive and/or SOBER speeding DRIVERS do the majority of killing on our highways across the US annually. The SOBERS kill 10 – 1.

    So my question to you: Why do we continue to fund MADD to the tune of 35M+ annually to push rights violating legislation (i.e. due process and unreasonable search without probable cause)? MADD has consumed our taxpayer dollars to the tune of 1 BILLION over the past 3 decades. It’s time to defund MADD as well as the easy law enforcement overtime.

    My next question: Is .05 saving lives or generating revenue? Yes, sarcasm is on. We know the answer. If it was about saving lives, we would use true statistics and stop funding a neo-prohibitionist non profit organization that is all about profit. We would fine and imprison the majority of people doing the killing.

    For the record, I do not support or condone drunk driving. I am trying to report FACTS to you as reported by law enforcement to the NHTSA. You will not get facts unless you dig into the link I provided above.

    My hope is that the above opens your eyes to the lies spewed by taxpayer funded entities like MADD and the NHTSA and now the NTSB which is run by a liberal appointed by Mr Obama. Her term expires in 2013. Good riddance.

    • May 16, 2013 at 11:11 am
      Libby says:
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      JusttheFacts – you’re rationale is flawed in that 95% of the drivers were “sober” ie. under .08. How many of those 95% were within .05 to .08? That would tell us if being .05 and over contributes to roadway fatalities or not.

      I am not advocating lowering the BAC limit to .05, just pointing out that your argument could actually bolster their’s without knowing all the data.

      • May 17, 2013 at 8:22 am
        jw says:
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        I think that was a typo. Further into the post JTF rephrases the conclusion to “The SOBERS kill 10 – 1.”

        • May 17, 2013 at 8:25 am
          jw says:
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          Oops, sorry, you weren’t referring to the “DRIVERS above .12 are doing the majority of killing on the roadways….” I reread your post AFTER my post went up. Just ignore me today. I’ll quit posting stuff now.

    • May 16, 2013 at 2:24 pm
      Dave says:
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      Good points justthefacts. The heavy chronic drunks are causing the problem. not the occasional 0.08-0.12 blower. Cracking down hard on the 2nd group while weak enforcement on the first group does little to correct the situation.

  • May 16, 2013 at 11:31 am
    JustTheFacts says:
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    Driving under the legal limit of .08 while performing the preventable activities of speeding or inattentive driving is doing the majority of killing on our roadways. The stats prove it.

    All this recommendation is doing is trying to blame every crash on the planet on a substance in a person’s blood. As more neo-prohibitionists end up in positions of power, alcohol is the cause of all crashes in their mind. Go to a DMV and look at the people getting licenses handed to them. Alcohol has nothing to do with it. Inattentive and speeding drivers are the cause of the majority of crashes.

    It’s funny how this liberal NTSB mouthpiece can’t focus on the facts and can only focus on how to turn the current 20B/yr DUI economy into a 60B/yr economy while creating a new class of criminal. The tea-totaling alleged drunk driver.

    This is neo-prohibition think at its best and yet MADD is not supporting it. Something is amiss.

    So LIbby, the gist, if you think I am supporting the NTSB assertion, ask yourself this question. At what point is caffeine causing you to be impaired to the point you can not safely operate a motor vehicle? That’s the next great idea brewing in the board room at the NTSB.

  • May 16, 2013 at 2:38 pm
    Libby says:
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    Libby neither thinks you are supporting the NTSB nor does she support the lowering of BAC to .05. I’m in the insurance business, which means I’ve had a cocktail or two in my day. Just questioning the data, that’s all.

    • May 17, 2013 at 10:56 am
      JustTheFacts says:
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      Got it Libby. Me to.

      I could run the report for .05 – .079. Why though? I do not fall for the fallacy that a substance in a person’s blood immediately means it was the cause of or even a contributing factor to the crash. Bureaucrats and special interest like MADD will always try to make that connection. And also note these same bureaucrats twist statistics to make an issue appear bigger than it really is.

      I’m glad I could help all of those that read my comments. After analyzing this FARS database for over 15 years, there is no truth in reporting coming out of agencies like the NHTSA or NTSB. On top of implying non-drivers are drivers in crashes involving fatals, they impute / make up statistics (drunk drivers) to fit their narrative to push their agendas. Fortunately, they have to define their imputation methodologies and must report raw data in their tables. The raw data does not support their narratives.

      I’ll also point out that the NHTSA releases numbers on fatalities in crashes early in the year yet they do not release the supporting raw data until well after their press releases have run their course through the media. A convenient way to make sure no one can research and dispute their assertions. Accident Year 2011 data was not released until December 2012. There’s no way to contradict any reporting issued by the NHTSA. Great home field advantage isn’t it.?

      • May 17, 2013 at 11:25 am
        Libby says:
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        I agree. I think I drive better after a couple of drinks than I do hungover or tired.

  • May 16, 2013 at 8:08 pm
    nomesaneman says:
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    I am an old “follow the money” guy and the “DUI Schools” are a real cottage industry. Great windfall for them.

    • May 22, 2013 at 2:12 pm
      bangersandmash says:
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      Florida is forcing you to take a driver course when you get even a traffic ticket….and the way things are worded on the ticket, they lead you to believe that if you just plead guilty and pay them, you’re done. Then the letter comes from the state requiring the course or suspension of your license will result. Garbage and extorsion. Den of vipers as has been said.

  • May 22, 2013 at 1:48 pm
    NG says:
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    I’d be much more worried about talking and driving and texting and driving than .05s. In my day, I often woke up with a .20.



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