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should the BAC be lowered

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  • should the BAC be lowered

    Good Day all, Do you think it will be a good idea to lower the BAC to .04 for all drivers . the BAC for truck drivers is .04 and if you are too drunk to drive a truck at .04 you should not be driving anything also make drunk driving a felony like it is in Canada

  • #2
    Originally posted by roadrunner5877 View Post
    Good Day all, Do you think it will be a good idea to lower the BAC to .04 for all drivers . the BAC for truck drivers is .04 and if you are too drunk to drive a truck at .04 you should not be driving anything also make drunk driving a felony like it is in Canada
    I think that drivers should be required to do more than convert oxygen into carbon dioxide before being granted a driver's license, to start with.

    There would be some difficulty in detecting a lower BAC and the level of impairment typically be associated with that lower BAC. It takes more than a little training/experience/commitment to develop the skill level required to detect .08 BAC and the level of impairment typically associated with that BAC, and to conduct a technically proficient DUI investigation. I put a LOT of work into developing my skill set over the years, and I have some advanced DUI training. I've done more DUIs than any patrol officer I know. I've done more DUIs than a lot of DUI task force officers. And of all the DUIs I've done where alcohol was the only intoxicant suspected, the lowest BAC I've ever seen on one of my DUI arrestees was about .052. I honestly can't imagine getting the majority of patrol officers up to the level of being able to reliably catch DUI offenders at a BAC threshold of .04.

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    • #3
      I do think that DUI penalties should be MUCH more severe- driving under the influence of an intoxicant is like playing Russian Roulette with every single motorist sharing the roads with the offender.

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      • #4
        .08 is much less than most people think.

        Most ANYONE, can and will blow above .08 without feeling drunk. By the time you’re feeling the alcohol you’re above .08.

        I personally don’t look down on anyone with a single DWI, that doesn’t involve injury or damage, again, .08 is much less than most people think.

        My thoughts are that after a DWI you should drink only when you’re at home, or know for a fact that you won’t be behind the wheel. After two DWI’s you should permanently give up drinking, you obviously have a drinking / judgement problem.

        I’ve never been stopped, questioned, FST’ed, etc for DWI. I drink only at home, after cutting the grass, yard work, or other sweaty activity, and never drink away from my house; I won’t ever compromise my commission.

        With the popularity of body cams, officer discretion isn’t the same as it was 30+ years ago,………
        Last edited by NolaT; 01-21-2023, 06:26 PM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Aidokea View Post
          I do think that DUI penalties should be MUCH more severe- driving under the influence of an intoxicant is like playing Russian Roulette with every single motorist sharing the roads with the offender.
          Agreed ^^^^^^

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          • #6
            I could not pass a field sobriety test being stone cold sober . doing the one foot in the air or the walk and twist around.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by roadrunner5877 View Post
              I could not pass a field sobriety test being stone cold sober . doing the one foot in the air or the walk and twist around.
              Why would you think that?

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              • #8
                it may be something with me but I have tried to stand with one foot out and count to 10 also tried to walk the 9 steps foot to foot when I had nothing to drink and could mot do it . that is why I do not drink if may have to drive.

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                • #9
                  FST’s aren’t conducted for the reason most civilians think,……..

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Aidokea View Post
                    There would be some difficulty in detecting a lower BAC and the level of impairment typically be associated with that lower BAC. It takes more than a little training/experience/commitment to develop the skill level required to detect .08 BAC and the level of impairment typically associated with that BAC, and to conduct a technically proficient DUI investigation...I honestly can't imagine getting the majority of patrol officers up to the level of being able to reliably catch DUI offenders at a BAC threshold of .04.
                    Therein lies one of the more serious issues with decreasing the BAC limits for DUI. SFST's are based on physiological reactions to the presence of certain levels of alcohol in the system and how they impair human coordination and reaction. When they dropped the limits from .10 to .08, they never really revised the SFST's. Dropping it from .08 to .04 would necessitate a MAJOR revision, since the clues would be much less pronounced or even non-existent at the lower BAC level (either that or an increased dependence on technological detection methods like PBT's, which bring their own sets of legal and enforcement hurdles). While I realize that other countries have lower BAC levels for DUI, they also have different legal systems that don't necessarily translate to the US.

                    The BAC for someone under the age of 21 is .02 in my state. I've had to explain to many a young officer that detecting such a low BAC requires a different set of investigative tools than working a straight DUI.
                    "He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."
                    -Friedrich Nietzsche

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by roadrunner5877 View Post
                      it may be something with me but I have tried to stand with one foot out and count to 10 also tried to walk the 9 steps foot to foot when I had nothing to drink and could mot do it . that is why I do not drink if may have to drive.
                      Is there something wrong with you that would prevent you from being able to walk a straight line or stand on one leg?

                      We don't have people count to 10. You obviously have no training, vocational experience, or demonstrated competency in interpreting the results of the WAT (Walk and Turn) and the OLS (One Leg Stand).

                      The WAT and OLS are just PART of the SFSTs (Standardized Field Sobriety Tests), and the SFSTs are just PART of a DUI investigation. We are looking at the totality, and we know the difference between alcohol impairment and clumsiness.

                      I've arrested DUI drivers that performed the WAT and OLS perfectly. I've arrested DUI drivers that refused to perform the WAT and OLS. I've arrested DUI drivers that I didn't see them driving. I've arrested DUI drivers that refused all breath/blood/urine testing. Heck, I've arrested DUI drivers that I didn't see driving, refused the SFSTs, AND refused all breath/blood/urine testing, and I still got convictions.
                      Last edited by Aidokea; 01-22-2023, 03:19 AM.

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                      • #12
                        Roadrunner5877, having a BAC of .00 doesn't mean that a DUI driver won't get arrested. I've arrested a number of DUI drivers that blew zeroes, but had other intoxicants in their systems. Over the counter medications, prescription medications, prescription medications prescribed to the offender by a doctor, and so on.

                        One of the easiest DUIs, is DUI drivers who are regular marijuana users, even if they have a "medical" marijuana prescription, even in states that have "legalized" recreational marijuana. Just because something is "legal" to posess and/or use, doesn't mean that it's legal to drive with it in your system, and marijuana stays in the system of regular marijuana users for up to 30 days, so they're DUI 24/7, every time they get behind the wheel, even if they don't "feel" high.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Bing_Oh View Post

                          Therein lies one of the more serious issues with decreasing the BAC limits for DUI. SFST's are based on physiological reactions to the presence of certain levels of alcohol in the system and how they impair human coordination and reaction. When they dropped the limits from .10 to .08, they never really revised the SFST's. Dropping it from .08 to .04 would necessitate a MAJOR revision, since the clues would be much less pronounced or even non-existent at the lower BAC level (either that or an increased dependence on technological detection methods like PBT's, which bring their own sets of legal and enforcement hurdles). While I realize that other countries have lower BAC levels for DUI, they also have different legal systems that don't necessarily translate to the US.

                          The BAC for someone under the age of 21 is .02 in my state. I've had to explain to many a young officer that detecting such a low BAC requires a different set of investigative tools than working a straight DUI.
                          As far as PBTs go, I quit carrying one. It's not admissible in court, and a lot of officers tend to use it as a "crutch", instead of developing their skill set. I just don't need it- I know what I'm looking at.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Aidokea View Post
                            As far as PBTs go, I quit carrying one. It's not admissible in court, and a lot of officers tend to use it as a "crutch", instead of developing their skill set. I just don't need it- I know what I'm looking at.
                            Personally, I only use them in relation to underage consumption where I only have to prove the presence of an alcoholic beverage (underage parties in particular, but traffic stops on a VERY rare basis). They CAN be admissible in court if their calibration is regularly checked and documented, but ours aren't. I agree that they can be used as a crutch and have personally made it very clear to officers under my supervision that they are NOT to be used as a normal part of DUI field testing (I've approved their use in very obscure instances, but not before other options have been exhausted).
                            "He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."
                            -Friedrich Nietzsche

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Bing_Oh View Post

                              Personally, I only use them in relation to underage consumption where I only have to prove the presence of an alcoholic beverage (underage parties in particular, but traffic stops on a VERY rare basis). They CAN be admissible in court if their calibration is regularly checked and documented, but ours aren't. I agree that they can be used as a crutch and have personally made it very clear to officers under my supervision that they are NOT to be used as a normal part of DUI field testing (I've approved their use in very obscure instances, but not before other options have been exhausted).
                              They can be used as an indicator of the offender's BAC to tell if they need to go to the ER. At the agency I worked for, we had policies that mandated anyone over .30 had to go to the ER. Even if my offender refused breath/blood/urine, I could often gain their voluntary cooperation with the PBT, by explaining that the PBT is inadmissible in court, and I just want to see if they require medical care.

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