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Panel proposes changes to blood alcohol concentration thresholds

When it comes to driving under the influence of alcohol, there is some level of debate as to how much is too much to safely operate a motor vehicle. A science panel recently convened at the nation's capital to discuss current laws, and made recommendations that the blood alcohol concentration threshold be lowered significantly. However, certain representatives within Wisconsin claim this would do little to solve the issues at hand.

The current legal limit for operating a motor vehicle in Wisconsin, and many other states, is a blood alcohol concentration of .08. If the recommendations of the science panel are passed into law, the new threshold would be .05, which is a drastic reduction. Certain Wisconsin lawmakers dispute these findings, claiming that the real issue lies with those who are prone to drinking heavily before driving.

A change from .08 to .05 might not seem like a significant change at first glance. However, studies suggest that the average person would reach the latter levels after only two or three drinks. Although studies suggest that drunk drivers are responsible for a substantial number of accidents each year, they also suggest that those involved in such accidents typically register nearly twice the legal limit to drive or higher.

Drunk driving is a serious offense that can carry severe penalties. Those who are accused of driving with a blood alcohol content that is above the legal limit could benefit from seeking guidance from an attorney as soon as any charges are filed. An attorney can help a client in Wisconsin gain an understanding of his or her legal rights and provide advice on the best course of action to take during subsequent legal proceedings.

Source:, "Science panel backs lower drunken driving threshold", Jan. 17, 2018

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