Bar-goers don't think lower drunk driving threshold will work

The scientific body is recommending states lowering the blood-alcohol concentration threshold from .08 to .05.

Posted: Jan 17, 2018 10:36 PM
Updated: Jan 18, 2018 10:01 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - A scientific panel is recommending that states significantly lower their drunken driving standards.

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine released a nearly 500 page report Wednesday.

The scientific body is recommending states lowering the blood-alcohol concentration threshold from .08 to .05.

The panel said the lower limit will help eliminate people getting behind the wheel drunk and reduce the number of drunk driving deaths across the country.

But many bar-goers in Fort Wayne don't think that's the answer.

"That, to me, is is insane, ridiculous," said Vincent Simmers.

"I don't think it's going to any way that people are drinking," said Sandra Faurote.

Faurote was just one of several people at the Tower Bar and Grill Wednesday afternoon who don't think lowering legal drunkenness to a blood alcohol content of .05 will work.

"They're still going to drink. It's just they are going they can get you for less alcohol content than they could before," she said.

"If you stop and think about it and knew the charts on the body weights or ratio, to me, .08 is too much," said Simmers.

Simmers said the states should raise the BAC limit back to 1.

However, Kevin Caldwell is on the other side of the bar, and the issue.

"I believe that lowering it will also make people more aware of how to control their drinking when they are out at nighttime, daytime, pretty much anytime," said. Caldwell.

The panel said lowering the drunken driving threshold could help eliminate the 10,000 alcohol-impaired driving deaths a year across the United States.

Fort Wayne Police said Cornelius Key, Jr., 69, died in this crash after a drunk driving crashed into the back of his truck two weeks ago.

Simmers said a BAC of .05 won't stop crashes like these.

"People are going to drink and drive but they need to stiffen the penalties. That might deter more than lowering the limit. All that's going to do is clog up the courts and the jail," said Simmers.

No matter the limit, Caldwell said he makes sure he's sober when he gets behind the wheel.

"I always be careful. make sure I don't ruin my car, ruin my life, loose my jobs everything under the sun. I want to make sure i'm pretty much protected," said Caldwell.

The panel also recommended states significantly increase alcohol taxes and make alcohol less conveniently available.

That includes reducing the hours and days alcohol is sold in stores.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 613228

Reported Deaths: 9728
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion846851338
Lake45676687
Allen32980552
Hamilton29649315
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Vanderburgh19610250
Tippecanoe18108141
Johnson15191295
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Vigo10795181
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Bartholomew6640100
Floyd6507110
Wayne6177162
Grant6027116
Dubois558680
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Noble475659
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Lawrence393780
Clinton375044
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Ohio Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 868656

Reported Deaths: 10768
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin102154707
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Hamilton64744448
Montgomery43516419
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Stark26096443
Warren19830142
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Trumbull12920317
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Wood10457158
Allen9988127
Portage9454111
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Richland9236118
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Columbiana7409124
Pickaway732150
Wayne7111172
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Jefferson422469
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Washington394240
Athens38389
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Highland279018
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Hocking173224
Carroll157616
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Noble121040
Meigs109724
Monroe102232
Harrison89921
Morgan83931
Vinton71314
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