In the U.S., laws in all local and state jurisdictions set a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent as the legal threshold for intoxication. However, in May 2013, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) announced its intent to pursue a lower intoxication threshold BAC of 0.05 percent. In a study review published in June 2014 in the journal Addiction, researchers from the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation assessed the risks of operating a motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol content of 0.05 percent and sought to determine if the use of this BAC as the legal standard for intoxication would reduce the general public’s exposure to alcohol-related harm.
High school graduation is a time for celebration and a time of transition, a time for looking forward and looking back. Sharing precious moments and memories with classmates, friends and family brings on a complex stew of emotions: excitement and a sense of accomplishment mixed with the nostalgia and sadness that accompany the end of any journey. Much has been gained and much will be lost, which makes graduation day a turning point for every young man and woman who experiences this unforgettable event.
When fewer kids are drinking alcohol, does that mean that we’ve won the war against drinking and driving? A large student survey from Canada could prove insightful for understanding the substance use trend among adolescents and for gauging which messages are getting through and which may not be.
Recent research has shown that over one-third of the pedestrians killed in 2011 had blood alcohol levels above the legal driving limit, which can be achieved after just a few drinks. There has been a significant increase in cases of “distracted walking” – this includes walking drunk and walking while using cell phones. From 2010 to 2011 there was a three percent jump in pedestrian fatalities.
Young drivers are most likely to be involved in sleep related or alcohol related car accidents every year. But if you asked those same drivers which is more dangerous, drunk drinking or driving when tired or distracted, the answer might surprise you. A recent news article discussed a new study that shows a majority of young drivers don’t put the same value in both forms of impaired driving.
Matthew Maher, the 25-year-old former pro soccer player from New Jersey’s Cape May County who admitted to killing a man while driving drunk, was sentenced to five-and-a-half years in state prison. Before sentencing, Maher took steps to educate others about the dangers of drinking and driving. He says he will spend the rest of his life trying to honor the one he recklessly took.
Earlier this year in Jersey City, 19-year-old Michael Garbacki drove drunk and plowed into a group of people. One victim’s skull was detached from her spinal column, and another victim suffered spinal injuries. Now there is a third victim in the case against the Bayonne man.