Michigan bill would put drivers in jail for 0.05 blood-alcohol limit

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Michigan may soon join Utah with the nation’s lowest drunken-driving limit.

Rep. Abdullah Hammound, D-Dearborn, sponsored a bill that would lower the state’s blood-alcohol content (BAC) for driving under the influence from 0.08 to 0.05.

All states had a BAC limit of 0.08 until Utah lowered it to 0.05 on Dec. 30.

The National Transportation Safety Board has been recommending states lower their BAC, saying that “more than 100 countries have already established per se BAC limits at or below 0.05."



To put the proposed limit into perspective, a 120-pound woman would be considered drunk after a little more than one drink in an hour. For a 160-pound man, it would take two drinks.

The number of deaths related to alcohol-impaired driving has steadily declined for decades. But in 2017, fatalities increased to 311 from 244 in 2016, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

To make the bill a law, the legislation must be approved by the state House of Representatives, the Senate and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

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