One of the key issues of the BAC laws is the use of “alcohol-related” as a surrogate for “alcohol-caused.” The massive NHTSA, MADD et.al. misinformation campaign has long implied that the mere presence of alcohol, no matter how little or how much, in an auto accident victim’s system should be considered the cause of the accident. This bureaucratic absurdity extends to persons who could not even remotely be considered as having caused an accident. A pedestrian run over at a bus stop by a sober driver becomes a “drunk driver victim” if the pedestrian had any measurable alcohol in his system.
Yes, drunk driving has taken many lives. Furthermore, society’s recognition and intolerance of drunk driving has resulted in a reduction of drunk driving accidents. But, drunk drivers NEVERcaused 57% of all highway related fatalities; they do not cause 40% of fatalities today, and there has not been a documented 25% reduction in drunk driving caused accidents. We have seen a substantial reduction in moderate drinking and driving and therefore a reduction of “alcohol-related” accidents.
It is a mistake to jump to the conclusion that reducing alcohol-related accidents results in a similar reduction of overall accidents. More likely the total number of accidents will remain constant or follow long term trends. The only difference is that the accidents largely shift from the alcohol-related column to the sober column. In other words, at low BACs, alcohol was not the causative factor for these accidents.
If drivers with low BAC levels, such as .08 or .09 percent, are not over-represented in the accident causing population, why are we targeting them with huge fines, property confiscation, loss of driver license, and obscene insurance surcharges? Laws that establish low legal BAC levels for drivers aren’t free, aren’t fair, and are based on hype and propaganda. Using the term “alcohol-related” is the lynch pin that holds this whole fabrication together.