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Sober driving advocates continue to introduce legislation to lower Hawaiʻi’s legal blood alcohol concentration level for driving : Maui Now


January 15, 2024, 10:30 AM HST

Sober driving advocates will once again introduce legislation this session seeking to lower Hawaiʻi’s legal blood alcohol concentration level for driving from 0.08 to 0.05 percent.

This is the fourth consecutive session that the Hawai‘i Alcohol Policy Alliance has supported such a bill.

HIAPA along with Mothers Against Drunk Driving are urging lawmakers to pass the legislation aimed at preventing alcohol-related traffic fatalities and injuries.

According to traffic safety facts released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in December 2023, an early estimate of motor vehicle traffic fatalities for the first nine months of 2023 indicates a 4.5% decrease across the United States, a 19% decrease in Hawai‘i. Following a spike in traffic fatalities during the pandemic, organization leaders call this reduction “encouraging.”

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However, the group notes that an estimated 40% of those deaths in Hawai‘i involve driver blood alcohol concentration of 0.01% or more, with the majority being higher than 0.08 %.

The Hawai‘i Alcohol Policy Alliance began in 2017 as a group of volunteers in different communities across the state coming together to “say no” to bills that would loosen alcohol regulations. Fiscally managed by Hawai‘i Public Health Institute, HIAPA aims to educate the community and advocate for evidence-based, responsible alcohol policies to reduce youth use and reduce alcohol-related harms.  

Source: Maui News

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