A move to toughen Maryland’s drunk driving laws?

A recently released report recommends lowering the blood alcohol content for drunk driving in an effort to save more lives.

Maryland residents have no doubt heard for many years now how dangerous drinking and driving is. Yet, despite the warnings and the clear evidence that drunk driving kills or maims innocent people, too many drivers refuse to put down their keys when choosing to consume alcohol. As a result, innocent people continue to die or be seriously and permanently injured in accidents that need not happen.

New report calls for tougher laws

WebMD indicates that the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine recently published a report that takes a look at the progress made in the war on drunk driving. Certainly, efforts taken over the past few decades have helped reduce unnecessary traffic fatalities but these same efforts now are proving to hit a roadblock.

Instead of continuing to reduce these deaths, the numbers are remaining more or less constant suggesting that something else needs to be done to keep people safe.

Among the actions recommended is the reduction of the accepted level of alcohol in a driver's system. Currently a person is deemed intoxicated if their blood alcohol content is 0.08 percent or higher according to the Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration. The report is pushing for that to be changed to 0.05 percent.

Also included in the recommendations are a set of actions designed to proactively prevent people from becoming intoxicated. These include steps that would essentially make obtaining or purchasing alcohol tougher by increasing taxes and therefore the cost of alcohol and even restricting sales in some ways.

Statistics support the need for change

In looking at data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it is clear Maryland still has work to do to quell the flow of deaths attributed to drunk driving.

Every year from 2012 to 2016, there were a minimum of 130 deaths in accidents in which alcohol was involved. In some years, there were more than 160 fatalities. Overall during those five years, 720 people lost their lives in drunk driving crashes statewide.

Other statistics cited in the report suggest that nationally alcohol is a factor in an average of one-third of all vehicular fatalities, killing more than 10,000 people every calendar year.

Action is needed after a crash

Maryland residents who suffer injuries due to the negligence of a drunk driver should never hesitate in contacting our firm for assistance. Aggressively pursuing compensation is an effective means for sending a message that you are taking a stand against drunk driving.