Connecticut lawmakers aim to lower blood alcohol level limits for drivers to reduce traffic deaths

One of the key issues when Connecticut's 2024 legislative session reconvenes next month will be lowering the state's blood alcohol level limit for driving in hopes of reducing traffic deaths.

Mark Sudol

Jan 29, 2024, 10:23 PM

Updated 113 days ago

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One of the key issues when Connecticut's 2024 legislative session reconvenes next month will be lowering the state's blood alcohol level limit for driving in hopes of reducing traffic deaths.
"Every time I think about her driving, I see those lights coming towards her," said Andrea Wilson, from Norwalk.
Wilson is still mourning the loss of her daughter Monica.
She was killed by a drunk driver going the wrong way on Route 8 in Bridgeport a year and a half ago.
Officials say 366 people died on Connecticut roads in 2022 – the most since 1989.
"Every single one of those tragedies are preventable and it's a horrible devastation," said State Sen. Tony Hwang.
Hwang, ranking member of the state transportation committee, said impairment has been a significant factor of these tragedies. "We can impose all the laws we want, but ultimately it is the common sense and awareness that the dangers on the road need to be respected," said Hwang. Once again lawmakers want to propose dropping Connecticut's blood alcohol content from .08 to .05.
The only state in the country at .05 is Utah.
The national standard is .08.
"Maybe .08 and above is still considered a criminal offense. .05-.079 might be an infraction like a speeding ticket," said Connecticut Transportation Commissioner Garrett Eucalitto.
Eucalitto said if you are between .05 and .08, you are seven times more likely of getting into a crash than if you're below .05.
Critics say reducing the blood alcohol content will just make it easier for police to arrest drivers, but the commissioner doesn't see it that way.
The state Department of Transportation said in the first 22 days of January, 17 people died in accidents on Connecticut roads.
The new legislative session begins on Feb. 7.


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