What happens if the BAC legal limit drops to .05%?
It doesn’t take many drinks to reach .05% BAC, and that could put restaurant operators and bar owners in a tough position if their state or municipality adopts the lower BAC limit.
Did you know The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) dropped its recommended legal blood alcohol content (BAC) level from .08% to .05% back in 2016? At that level, a 120-lb. woman will hit .05% BAC after having a little more than a single drink and a 160-lb. man would be considered legally intoxicated after just two drinks in an hour.
Since states take their cue from the NTSB, many have moved forward with legislation proposing the lowered BAC limit. Utah did lower its BAC limit to .05 and similar bills have been introduced in California, Hawaii, Michigan, New York, Oregon, and Washington.
It doesn’t take many drinks to reach .05% BAC, and that could put restaurant operators and bar owners in a precarious position if their state or municipality opts to adopt the lower BAC limit, not the least of which is determining a person’s BAC to begin with.
BAC is affected by:
- Drink strength
- Drink quantity and consumption rate
- Body size and type
- Food intake
- Drink carbonation
No question operators have a responsibility to help prevent intoxication and drunk driving. But if a .05% BAC limit is adopted in more states, how will operators train employees to prevent illegal sales and how will their liability be affected?
To find out what the BAC limit establishes, how it’s measured, how limits have been set historically, and how the lower limit will impact restaurant and bar operators, get the full story on ServSafe Alcohol’s new ServItUp portal. And sign up your employees for ServSafe Alcohol training.
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