New house bill proposes lowering legal blood alcohol content - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

New house bill proposes lowering legal blood alcohol content

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WASHINGTON - A house bill in the state legislature is proposing to cut the legal blood alcohol content limit in drivers throughout the state. House bill 1874 proposes to cut the legal driving limit from .08 to .05. Reporter Rex Carlin learned more about the bill some are urging for, while others are calling it a waste of resources.

State Representative Brad Klippert has co-signed the bill, saying he wants the bill to be a clear message to not drive if you're going to drink at all.

"I am not a consumer of alcohol," said Rep. Klippert. "If I was at .05, I would definitely be impaired. I would be a risk out there on the roadways. That's why we are suggesting to change the percent limit, because we want our roads safer."

The managing director of the American Beverage Institute says this bill won't accomplish anything, citing that this bill doesn't target what she says is the real problem: repeat offenders and people driving with BACs well over the current limit.

"This bill is so bad that even Mothers Against Drunk Driving isn't supporting it," said Sarah Longwell with the American Beverage Institute. "The number one anti-drunk driving organization in the country is not behind this bill to lower the legal limit because they understand that this is not where fatalities happen, so it's a waste of resources and time."

Rex Carlin reached out to Mothers Against Drunk Driving this afternoon, and its Chief Government Affairs Officer sent a statement saying: "MADD does not support efforts to lower the BAC to .05 because we are focusing our efforts on proven countermeasures that work, such as ignition interlock laws for all drunk driving offenders, and sobriety checkpoints". 

Clearly, everybody involved wants to eliminate drunk driving out on our roadways, but as of right now, disagreements continue with coming up with an effective solution to the problem.

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