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The BAC Myth

Blood alcohol Concentration tests (BAC's) do not determine a persons ability to operate a motor vehicle any more accurately then a scale alone can determine if a person is overweight…
Within this article we will investigate all the flaws in a system that is simply designed to generate more revenues for the DUI Industry. We will also propose an alternative, more accurate testing method for identifing those drivers who pose a true threat.
The media often sensationalize studies about the effect of alcohol on driver's reaction times. By design, these 'Prime Time Side Shows' regularly highlight the effects of adult beverages on non-drinkers who have no tolerance for alcohol.

To illustrate this issue, consider case of an Illinois driver who was pulled over as he exited the parking lot of a local club. The driver was coerced into submitting to a breathalyzers and was subsequently arrested on DUI charges when he tested .14 BAC [.08 is now the legal limit in Illinois.]

Only 10 minutes before the arrest, this driver had ended a dart game by throwing three consecutive darts into the bulls-eye. Very few things require greater eye-hand coordination and balance then this accomplishment known as a hat trick.

The significance of this case has to do with metabolism and alcohol tolerance. Just as certain individuals can consume a diet high in calories without gaining weight, and others consume salt without triggering high blood pressure, still others are less susceptible to the effects of alcohol.

In addition, social drinkers (as in the case above) have a higher tolerance for alcohol due to more regular consumption, which by the way is not illegal.

Based on the DUI Industry's own studies, the most accurate indicator of a persons ability to drive is not a driver BAC but their reaction time. Therefore DAMM proposes a more appropriate testing procedure in the form of a hand held simulator which;
1.) Would directly measure reaction time,
2.) Would not be as susceptible to calibration errors and
3.) Would be considerably less expensive than the BAC procedures which are currently being utilized.

A minimum standards for reaction time could be established based on the minimum requirement for the State to issue a drivers license. I.e.; if the State will issue a license to a 75 year old driver whose response time on a simulator is 1.5 seconds, then obviously the State considers 1.5 seconds to be within safe limits for operating a motor vehicle on public roadways.

"So, why estimate reaction time based on BAC rather than simply measuring reaction time?" The DUI Industry utilize the BAC method of testing drivers simply because it provides a greater opportunity to generate revenue, see; "Who gets what out of this deal!"



Driver Reaction Time
Driver reaction times are measurable calculations of the time it takes a driver to respond to given circumstances; traffic light, an obstruction in the road, etc.

Studies conducted by the NHTA have determined that; "as drivers BAC levels increase, their vehicle speed decreases proportionally."

The obvious conclusion is that drivers do in fact react appropriately by adjusting their speed to accommodate current conditions. Ironically, police officers are instructed to target vehicles, which are traveling at or below the legal speed limit.

The implied message of "Standard Police Procedure" seems to be, "Drive faster?"

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