ASSE Backs NTSB for Tougher Standard on Impaired Driving

drink_keysASSE is backing National Transportation Safety Board’s (NTSB) effort to encourage states to reduce the legal standard for alcohol-impaired driving from a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% to 0.05%.

In a letter to Christopher Hart, acting NTSB chair, President Patricia M. Ennis, CSP, ARM, wrote, “ASSE’s interest in seeing that the legal standard for driver impairment is lowered arises from our members’ interest in doing whatever is reasonably possible to make driving safer.” In the U.S., more workers die on highways than in any other workplace setting. According to an NTSB report, success in addressing this issue has plateaued. “Since 1995, although the annual number of fatalities has declined, nearly one in three of all highway deaths still involves an alcohol-impaired driver. The cause of these deaths is well understood and preventable, yet even the most concerted efforts have not kept thousands of lives from being lost,” the report notes. “On the release of NTSB’s 2013 Safety Report, Reaching Zero: Actions to Eliminate Alcohol-Impaired Driving, the members of [ASSE’s] Transportation Practice Specialty took it upon themselves to develop a position paper supporting NTSB’s call.” Ennis notes that a lower BAC, increased education, in-vehicle devices and other measures addressed in the Reaching Zero report will help significantly to manage these driving risks.

“We know the task of achieving a 0.05% BAC across the country will be long and challenging,” Ennis writes. “We encourage you to include ASSE if there are opportunities to work together with the NTSB and its partners in helping advance this effort. The members of our Transportation Practice Specialty in particular are eager to work to support the adoption of this measure” Click here to learn more.