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Bill introduced might lower number of drunk driving accidents

Accidents caused by drunk drivers can be very serious. These accidents can often cause serious injuries or deaths and destroy property. Of the more than 30,000 fatalities that occur annually on U.S. highways, approximately one-third can be attributed to a drunk driver. If one mayoral nominee in the District of Columbia has it her way, the legal limit for the blood-alcohol level will be lowered. This could reduce the number alcohol-related fatal car accidents.

Almost a year ago, the National Transportation Safety Board recommended that the blood alcohol limit in states be reduced to .05 percent. No states have yet followed this recommendation.

Surprisingly, Mothers Against Drunk Driving hasn't gotten on board to endorse this lower limit. The group did, however, endorse the move for states to use the blood alcohol limit of .08 percent. A spokesman for the group says that there is doubt as to the conclusiveness of the impairment at .05 percent, which could make it hard for jurisdictions to effectively enforce the lowered limit. Instead of the lowered limit, the group is supporting ignition interlock devices as a way to reduce drunk driving.

Under the bill introduced by the councilmember, drunk drivers with a blood alcohol content of .05 to .08 who don't have any previous violations would get a three-day license suspension. That penalty is lighter than what someone with a blood alcohol level above .08 would face. The bill needs seven votes to pass. Two councilmembers have shown that they will likely support the bill.

Anyone who has been in an accident caused by a drunk driver knows the difficulty victims face with recovery. Not only are there emotional, mental and physical impacts of the injuries suffered, there are also financial impacts. Seeking compensation for the financial ramifications the accident had on you might help to ease the financial strain of the accident. Compensation may also be sought for non-economical damages, such as emotional trauma and pain and suffering.

Source: Independent Record, "DC mayoral nominee wants lower limit for DUI" Ben Nuckols, May. 06, 2014

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