Washington, D.C. (January 6, 2021)—Today, legislation (S131) was introduced in the New York Senate to lower the legal blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for driving from 0.08 to 0.05—a 40 percent reduction. A 120-pound woman can reach a 0.05 BAC arrest level after consuming little more than a single drink. The American Beverage Institute (ABI)—a restaurant trade association—strongly opposes the measure.

ABI released the following statement:

We have no doubt that supporters of Senate Bill 131 have good intentions, but simply watering down the definition of “drunk” will do nothing to save lives, while also arresting responsible consumers. Law enforcement should be focused on high-BAC product abuse. The vast majority of alcohol-related traffic fatalities occur well above the current legal limit of 0.08. These are the people who are abusing alcohol, not a 120-pound woman who had little more than a glass of wine prior to driving.

In Depth on the Issue

Lowering the Blood-Alcohol Arrest Level

ABI strongly opposes lowering the blood-alcohol arrest level. The move is an attack on the restaurant and hospitality industries and converts responsible consumers into criminals. Don’t allow your state legislature or municipality to be fooled by a false narrative linking a lower BAC arrest threshold with increased traffic safety. Stand…
More on Lowering the Blood-Alcohol Arrest Level →

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